(USA Today) A community is outraged after a Michigan public school teacher was removed from the classroom after showing a video of white entertainers in blackface.
District officials are looking into whether 59-year-old Alan Barron's lesson plan on African American history and Jim Crow racial segregation laws was inappropriate.
The Monroe News reports that Barron showed a video of how white people used blackface to imitate African Americans during what they considered entertainment in the 1800s. According to parents whose children are in the eighth-grade class, the administrator thought the lesson plan was offensive and racist.
Parent Adrienne Aaron, whose husband is African American, told The Monroe Newsher daughter was not offended and that she felt that the subject needs to be discussed.
"She was more offended that they stopped the video," Aaron said of her daughter. "It had nothing to do with racism. History is history. We need to educate our kids to see how far we've come in America. How is that racism?"
Many parents and students are supporting Barron, who is retiring at the end of this school year after 36 years in the classroom.
During his suspension, Mr. Barron is not allowed to attend district functions, including an annual banquet where retiring teachers are honored.