August 11, 1995
LouAnne Johnson is a former Marine who wants to become a teacher. An old friend gets her a job as an English teacher in his high school, which is set in a rough area of Los Angeles. Johnson is white, and the majority of her students are blacks and Latinos. They disrespect her and nickname her White Bread. Desperate to gain the students attention, Johnson has them break down the lyrics to Bob Dylan’s song “Mr. Tambourine Man.” She uses this success to continue teaching English with unorthodox methods, gaining the children’s respect and helping them learn. The kids start tuning to her with their personal problems, and she is a source of comfort and guidance for them. The kids and the teacher come to love one another as the year passes, and the students demand Johnson stays on at the end of the school year.