El Niño, Downtown Los Angeles 1966 - age 3.

El Niño, Downtown Los Angeles 1966 - age 3.

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Jamie Escalante, L.A. teacher from Stand and Deliver fighting cancer.

Photo Courtesy of Dept of Special Collections/UCLA Library.

Jamie Escalante the Bolivian born educator who gained famed in the early 1980’s as the Advanced Placement Calculus teacher at Los Angeles Garfield High School is battling cancer and his family has run out of money to pay for his cancer treatments. The story of Jamie Escalante and Garfield High School is depicted in the 1988 film Stand and Deliver staring Edward James Almos, Lou Diamond Phillips and Andy Garcia. In 1982, 18 of Mr. Escalante’s students passed the Advanced Placement Calculus exam and the results of the tests were questioned because each of the 18 students made the exact same error. More than likely because they were all taught the same techniques by the same teacher as noted in the film. 14 students were asked to retake the exam and the 12 that agreed to do so passed the second time. The number of Garfield students that passed the AP calculus exam continued to rise each year until Mr. Escalante left Garfield High School in 1991. The cast members from Stand and Deliver are currently raising money to help pay for his medical bills. Edward James Almos portrays Mr. Escalante in this touching film that showcases period Los Angeles in the early 1980’s.

Please get well Mr. Escalante.

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