Inspiration: Crazy Joe Clark, Lean on Me

We’ve all seen the movie Lean on Me, starring Morgan Freeman, about former principal of Eastside High School in Paterson, New Jersey, Joe Clark. I love the movie! It’s like the Godfather. Anytime it’s on I have to watch it. Now, here’s an interview with the real Crazy Joe:



Inspiration is a kick in the pants and Mr. Clark will gladly whip your butt into shape. So, whether it’s losing weight, getting to the gym, improving your diet or asking that coworker out. Pick yourself up and do it. If you can’t, think about Joe Clark and what he fought through. Feed on that!

Image credit: ralongx

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Comments (5) Read through and enter the discussion with the form at the end
KC - June 4, 2009 7:44 AM

Love the blog, Gerry. But "Get Tough" has a terrible track record in education, as the interviewer pointed out. There are many equally courageous educators who manage to draw students in, who believe in kids, and who actually deliver the goods on educational excellence. This guy sounds like a pompous Napoleon-type to me.

Gerry Pugliese - June 4, 2009 7:47 AM

Hey KC-

Good point. But he's a man. And every man has flaws. But I think his overall message is pretty inspirational.


Sharon Shaw - June 4, 2009 11:28 PM

Principal Clark is a riveting orator and he does make sense. However...I wonder if he has, or would consider Dr Fuhrman's philosophy of Nutritional Excellence. If this were implemented as the basis of each student's diet, I believe that the (positive) results would, possibly for the first time, render Joe Clark speechless.

mari - November 11, 2009 9:54 PM

attendin eastsie (2004) i understand the story and so proud to say that mr.clark is a person who succeded in helpin' eastside , now only if other ppl wrking there now wld b that way mayb there wldn't b so much drugs and teen pregancy in the school

Felicia Carroll - December 18, 2010 7:52 PM

Joe Clark was my principal at PS#6 4th grade through 6th grade and I always felt safe. When I graduated and went on to Eastside, he went with me. My parents & I were scared to death of what we knew I'd face there, but Mr. Clark promised them and myself that he would do everything in his power to protect me and all of his students and he did just that. He always had his students' best interest at heart. He kept it "real" with us and encouraged us. He was and still is a great inspiration to me. He made an impact in my life. I have great respect for him and his method of educating and disciplining. Too bat there aren't more educators/mentors like Joe Clark.

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