To Sir With Love Parent Guide
Parent Movie Review
In the 1967 film, To Sir With Love, Mark Thackery (Sidney Poitier) is an unemployed engineer who resorts to taking a public school teaching position as a temporary financial solution while he continues to search for a job in his field. But the refined and cool-headed gentleman isn’t prepared for the rowdy group of dirty delinquents he meets on his first day of class. For many of these teenagers, school is just a break from the daily challenge of eking out life on the mean streets of London. Cocky, foul-mouthed, and uncontrollable, they are bent on disposing of this new teacher as quickly as they did the last one. A lot of head butting goes on until Thackery tries a novel approach to educating his students about life in the real world.
Demanding common courtesy and respect among his pupils is only the first step. His battles also extend beyond the classroom to the narrow-minded school administrators, and fighting against the inbred social ideas that hold his students in a dead-end mindset. Facing numerous racial slurs and backhanded comments by disgruntled fellow teachers and misguided parents, the cultured and world-traveled educator’s most valuable teaching tool is his personal example of someone who has risen above social stereotypes. While everyone does not respond to his efforts, Thackery remains vigilant in his attempts to make positive changes.
Having recently returned from a performing tour with a group of musical elementary students, I observed firsthand the untiring efforts of my son’s music director and gained a greater appreciation for teachers—the unsung heroes of childhood. To Sir With Love is a touching tribute to those exceptional educators who enlighten, encourage and open the eyes of their students, by going above and beyond the mark.
Starring Sidney Poitier, Judy Geeson, Lulu. Updated July 17, 2017
To Sir With Love
Rating & Content Info
Why is To Sir With Love rated Not Rated? To Sir With Love is rated Not Rated by the MPAA
Determined to better the lives of his students, a temporary teacher earns their respect while fighting to give them new opportunities for learning.
Unruly students show disrespect to teacher. Object dropped from window, meant to hit teacher. Reference to student needing beating. Books thrown in classroom. Provoked student attempts to hit teacher with broken table leg.
Sexual Content: B-
Sexual banter between women on bus. Boys looking at centerfold. Brief shot of doll that appears to have expandable breasts. Girl is pinched on backside. Reference to girl using slang sexual term. Obscure portrayal of a soiled sanitary napkin. Reference made to finding mom at home with man.
At least: 16 mild profanities, 3 moderate profanities and 3 terms of Deity.
Alcohol / Drug Use: C+
Movie includes a few scenes of students and a teacher smoking at or in the school. Adult makes reference to wanting to drink whole bottle of wine.
Page last updated July 17, 2017
More parents' guide for To Sir With Love after the break...
To Sir With Love Parents' Guide
Everything old is new again. Did any of the clothes and hairstyles in this movie look similar to the fashions of today (2001)?
What do you think was significant about Mr. Thackery’s in-class salad-making demonstration that used common ingredients in a new way? What could this teach them about seeing new ways to succeed in life?
Have you ever had a teacher that positively impacted your life?
Related home video titles:
There are a number of inspiring stories about teachers in the classroom. Stand And Deliver is the story of math teacher Jaime Escalante, Meryl Streep teaches violin lessons in Music Of The Heart (both are based on true stories), and Richard Dreyfuss stars as a high-school band teacher in Mr. Holland’s Opus.