"Jaime Escalante: Sensational Teacher" by Ann Byers
Jaime Escalante: Sensational Teacher," by Ann Byers is based on the life story of Jaime Escalante, a new high school teacher in East L.A. in 1982, who decides to change the lives of his students by preparing them for an advanced placement test in calculus. I chose this book because it was a book I read when I was younger and I remember thinking that the teacher did such amazing things with the students. Now that I am about to occupy a similar position, I wanted to revisit the film and evaluate his methods based on what I've learned so far as a teacher and pre-service student. The book deals with the very timely issues of equity, standardized testing, funding shortages and the challenges of the inner city school environment.
When the book opens, the socio-economic and cultural demographic of the area is laid out. Hispanic workers line the roads and although the area seems quite culturally alive - a mural exclaims "We are NOT a minority!"-- it is obviously economically disadvantaged. …
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