When Peer Pressure Is a Good Thing

Meet the Strivers of the Coachella Valley High School Advanced Placement Club

In every classroom, there is a kind of tipping point when the unmotivated students either get pulled along by the high achievers, or the unmotivated students hold the high achievers back.

I see this all the time teaching English at Coachella Valley High School in Southern California’s Inland Empire. Most of my students come from low-income households, have had to learn English as a second language, and hope to be the first in their families to go to college. They’ve been told since they were in elementary school that higher …