Today is the birthday of Bel Kaufman (1911) (books by this author). She was born in Berlin and grew up in Odesa and Kyiv. Granddaughter of the writer Sholem Aleichem, who wrote the stories that became Fiddler on the Roof.
Kaufman taught in the New York public school system for 20 years. She had a terrible time passing the oral exam to get her teaching certificate because of her Russian accent, but she finally did and eventually turned the frustrations of her teaching career into a novel. It was called Up the Down Staircase (1965), and the story was told through a collection of letters, notes, and school memos.
Kaufman died July 25, 2014, at the age of 103.