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Michigan Teacher Reinstated After ‘Black-Face’ Lesson Brouhaha

Al Jolson
Hulton Archive, Getty Images

After a two week suspension, a veteran Southeast Michigan teacher in finally back in the classroom. Alan Barron was put on administrative leave after a school administrator observed the middle school teacher teaching about African American history. Barron showed students a :29 second video of a minstrel show that demonstrated how performers once used black-face for entertainment.

“It was a lesson on stereotypes,” his attorney, C.J. Horkey told the Monroe News.

Barron’s suspension received national attention, and the Monroe Public School district was widely criticized for its action.

In a recorded message, the district acquiesced Sunday night, saying that some information that had been circulated was incorrect, and that the district was not opposed to Barron’s teaching methods.

Barron expressed his gratitude on his personal Facebook page.

“I have no words that can express my gratitude and thanks for the support you have shown toward me during this turbulent time of my career. Each day I preach to my students far more than history. I preach about choices, commitment and community service as I try to practice what I teach.”

- George McIntyre
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