If you frequently write letters (or, if like me, you only use the postal system once a month for your rent check), you can add Jaime Escalante’s face to the top right corner of your envelopes starting today. The U.S. Postal Service honored the Bolivian-born educator with his own first-class mail Forever stamp, and with the help of the League of United Latin American Citizens (LULAC) threw a party in his honor.
In 1988, Edward James Olmos portrayed the inspiring educator in Stand and Deliver. Escalante, who died in 2010, defied the odds when a record number of students considered “unteachable” passed the AP calculus exam. USPS spokesman Roy Betts explained that a committee of 14 chose Escalante out of tens of thousands because of his legacy. “He is, without question, a very deserving subject, Betts said, according to NBC News. “The legendary educator is well-known for academic excellence and working with inner-city youth to help them master calculus.”
Based on an image Jaime W. Escalante took in 2005 at the Hiram Johnson High School where the educator taught, the 47-cent stamp features the artwork of Jason Seiler. The digital illustration resembles an oil painting.