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Students Only Know a Fraction of Math Teacher’s Good Deeds

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No one saw the superhero in mild-mannered Clark Kent.

jimocconor

Jim O’Connor carries month-old patient Mace De Luna at Children’s Hospital. O’Connor is a frequent blood donor and volunteers at Children’s Hospital. (Brian van der Brug, Los Angeles Times / December 11, 2013)

Jim O’Connor keeps his students fooled too.

In his algebra and calculus classes at St. Francis High School, he is stern — no excuses, no coddling. “If you look at the clock,” said senior Michael Tinglof, who had O’Connor in his freshman year, “you’re on his bad list for the rest of the class.”

The 70-year-old teacher’s look also is all business: spine straight, close-cropped silver hair. When he cracks a joke, he’s so deadpan that the boys often miss it, senior Pat McGoldrick said.

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