Morrissey mentions this film in Autobiography as one he'd watch with his sister:
"My sister and my mother never sing, but my sister and I were united in the glorification of the social problem film – a fly-by television treat never to be missed, especially the school-as-cesspit honesty of Spare The Rod (1961), Term Of Trial (1962), Up The Down Staircase (1967) or To Sir, With Love (1967), wherein slum kids are shown to endure in sufferance the pointlessness of secondary education (for what use is anything at all that is secondary?). Blackboard Jungle (1957) had been the first to free teachers – spouting resentment at the no-hope kids who were, by birth, three rungs below scum – and boundaries of frankness snapped. Jackie and I would watch as many films as we could, long before the days when television channels refused to transmit monochrome films for fear that no one would watch."
Up the Down Staircase is a 1967 American drama film directed by Robert Mulligan and starring Oscar winners Sandy Dennis and Eileen Heckart, along with Patrick Bedford and Jean Stapleton. The plot concerns the first, trying assignment for a young, idealistic teacher. Tad Mosel wrote the screenplay adaptation of the novel of the same name by Bel Kaufman. This was one of two last films, along with The Family Way, released by Warner Bros. Pictures before the company was rebranded as Warner Bros.-Seven Arts in July 1967.