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Judge Dismisses Lawsuit Over Reading About Slavery

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MOUNT CLEMENS (AP) – A Macomb County judge has dismissed a lawsuit brought by a man who claimed his daughter’s civil rights were violated by a fifth-grade teacher’s reading aloud from a book about slavery.

Judge John Foster on Monday threw out the suit at Warren Consolidated Schools’ request. Jamey Petree sued in 2010. His daughter was a student at Margaret Black Elementary School in Sterling Heights that year when the passages were read.

The lawsuit claimed racial bias and harassment. The teacher read excerpts from the award-winning book, “From Slave Ship to Freedom Road,” which contains racial epithets and racist characterizations.

Foster says the book didn’t violate the Elliott-Larsen Civil Rights Act because it supplemented the approved fifth-grade social studies textbook and curriculum.

Attorney Scott Combs, who represents the family, says he’ll appeal.

(© Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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