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UE reflection 3 - Urban Education Reflection#3 Movie...

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Urban Education Reflection #3: Movie Critique ( Dangerous Minds) Dangerous Minds , a film released in 1995, is about a retired U.S. marine, LouAnne Johnson, who takes an impromptu full-time job offer at Parkmont High School in East Palo Alto, California. She is placed in “the academy”, a class for “special kids”. The class is made up of almost entirely minority students who are bussed into the school from the poorer urban areas of the city. She is nicknamed “white bread” by the students, but decides to accept the challenge of earning their respect by means of unconventional methods she thinks will reach her students, such as teaching the students karate, cursing in the classroom, and using Bob Dylan lyrics to teach poetry. As rewards, LouAnne offers her class candy bars, fancy dinners and a trip to a theme park. She continues her relationship with some students beyond the classroom and visits the homes of some of the teens who get into fights at school and fail to show up to class daily, and that of one girl who is pregnant. Although in the final scenes of the movie, Ms. Johnson is planning to leave the job, the students quote Bob Dylan lyrics and refer to her as their “light” and beg her to stay. The closing scene contains many hugs between Ms. Johnson and students, and she decides to remain in her position at Parkmont High School. The viewer sees through the eyes of LouAnne Johnson, heroically taking time out of her evenings to visit her students’ homes, and talk to their parents. In one case concerning a student, Raul, Ms. Johnson makes a house call and praises him as a student and nonchalantly tells his parents that they “must be very proud.” Tears fill Raul’s eyes, and the viewer is filled with emotion and admiration for Ms. Johnson, who somehow in a
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