What is Braithwaite's perspective on the power of education in To Sir With Love by E.R Braithwaite?

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Ashley Kannan | Middle School Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

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It is clear that Braithwaite embraces the transformative power of education in To Sir, With Love.

The most resounding affirmation of the power of education to change lives is in how Braithwaite does not leave the profession.  At the end of the narrative, Braithwaite has a decision to make.  Either he can leave and pursue a career outside of teaching or he can stay in the profession.  In the exchange between Braithwaite and Florian, it is clear that Braithwaite accepts the power of education.  Just as it has transformed his students' lives, it changed his. He cannot walk away from this awesome power and responsibility.  

Braithwaite displays the power of education in the transformation of his students's lives.  Braithwaite has seen them emerge from social rejects and cast aways into young men and women.  That has been due to Braithwaite's beliefs that education can transform those who come into contact with it.  His students become ladies and gentlemen, young people who are ready to go out into the world and find their own voice in it. Braithwaite embraced a pedagogical approach to forge connection with his students.  This connection was rooted in instructional methods that had relevance to the lives of his students.  In the successful change in his students, Braithwaite has validated the power of education.  He has established himself as different from the abusive Mr. Bell and Mr. Weston.  Braithwaite has constructed experiences where it is clear that education can change lives of both students and teacher.

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