Breaking

Principal Joe Clark who inspired film "Lean On Me" starring Morgan Freeman dies at the age of 82.


Joe Louis Clark, the baseball bat and bullhorn-wielding principal who inspired the 1989 film “Lean on Me,” starring Morgan Freeman, has died. 
.
He died at his Florida home on Tuesday December 29, after a long battle with an unspecified illness, his family said in a statement. He was 82.
.
Born in Rochelle, Georgia, on May 8, 1938, Clark’s family moved north to Newark New Jersey, when he was 6 years old. 
.
After graduating from Newark Central High School, Clark received his bachelor’s degree from William Paterson College (now William Paterson University), a master’s degree from Seton Hall University, and an honorary doctorate from the U.S. Sports Academy.
.
Clark started teaching at a Paterson grade school in Essex County, N.J., before becoming principal of PS 6 Grammar School.
.
In one day, he expelled 300 students for fighting, vandalism, abusing teachers, and drug possession, and lifted the expectations of those who remained, continually challenging them to perform better. 
.
Roaming the hallways with a bullhorn and a baseball bat, Clark’s disciplinary methods won him both admirers and critics nationwide.
.
President Ronald Reagan offered Clark a White House policy advisor position after his success at the high school.
.
Morgan Freeman starred as Clark in the 1989 film “Lean on Me” which was loosely based on Clark's tenure at Eastside.
.
After he retired from Eastside in 1989, Clark worked for six years as the director of Essex County Detention House, a juvenile detention center in Newark. He also served as a U.S. Army Reserve sergeant and a drill instructor.
.
He retired to Gainesville, Florida.
.
Clark is survived by his children, Joetta, Hazel and JJ, and grandchildren, Talitha, Jorell and Hazel. 




No comments:

Powered by Blogger.