High school adviser loses job after failing to submit newspaper to principal for prior review

GEORGIA - When English teacher Lynlee Doar showed up in her classroom on Aug. 3, she thought she was dropping off some things for her classes that would begin in a few weeks.

But she left school that day minus a title she had when she walked in the door: adviser of the Southwest DeKalb High School student newspaper, The Prowler.

As Doar prepared for the unpcoming school year, Principal Stanley Henson asked to speak with her. He told her that he was taking the newspaper away from her.

"I was just dumbfounded," Doar said. "My first words to him were, 'Why?' and 'You know I'm going to fight this.'"

According to Doar, Henson said she had failed twice to submit the paper for his review.

"He laughed when I said I didn't have to [show him the newspaper before publication]," she said.

Doar said she had failed to submit the paper for approval once in March or April.

"I was trying to get to deadline," she said. "I apologized."

Doar said she believes that her firing was fueled by censorship. She said Henson had previously told her that he did not like the newspaper's "negative" articles.

Henson did not return a call for comment. Doar said he did not tell her who would replace her. But she said it does not matter.

"I have a journalism degee," she said. "I'm the most qualified person [to be adviser] in that building."

Doar said she has contacted the area director, Henson's supervisor, to meet with him. In addition, she has contacted all 15 students who were registered to work on the newspaper this fall, as well as some parents.

"My students love the paper," Doar said. "I have drilled into their brains their responsibilities as a journalist. They also know they carry a huge responsiblity to their school and community."

Georgia, news, Southwest DeKalb High School, The Prowler