High School

Roeper School teacher on leave after assignment depicts Barack Obama alongside primates

OAKLAND COUNTY, Mich. – An Oakland County The teacher is on leave over an offensive assignment she handed out in class that depicted a former president alongside several primates.

The assignment asked, “Which of the following are primates?” and showed former President Barack Obama alongside several animals.

Now The Roeper School in Oakland County is trying to make sense of what happened and determine what the teacher intended. Regardless of intent, students and families are upset over the worksheet.

There were no classes held on Thursday (May 19) and police were stationed outside the school because of threats made online.

Carolyn Lett is the Director of Diversity for the school. She said she spoke with the teacher and had plenty of questions.

“When I saw it I couldn’t believe it,” Lett said. “It is something that the teacher did. You know, purposefully put this picture in along with the animals and the apes and the primates. I’m trying to understand this myself. But right away I had a reaction. like, ‘It’s so wrong I can’t understand it.’ “


Lett said the offensive images have hurt students. She asked the teacher what she would do next.

“She had her biology hat but didn’t realize the sensitivity and awareness she should have had culturally,” Lett said.

Lett said Roeper is gathering all the facts and will present them to families to move forward.

Read: More local news coverage

Copyright 2022 by WDIV ClickOnDetroit – All rights reserved.


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