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Popular Miss. teacher loses job after showing R-rated movie

Feb. 5, 2014 at 7:40 PM   |   Comments

JACKSON, Miss., Feb. 5 (UPI) -- A Mississippi high school teacher is now unemployed because she showed a 10th-grade class an R-rated film not screened by administrators.

The Rankin County School District said Mary Porter, a 19-year veteran English teacher highly popular among students at Richland High School in Jackson, was preparing students for a lesson on Edgar Allen Poe when she showed them "Dolan's Cadillac," a 2009 film staring Christian Slater.

She had planned to ask students to compare the movie, based on a Stephen King short story, to a Poe poem.

The film contains profane language and violence, district administrators said, and had not been approved for classroom use, the (Jackson) Clarion Ledger reported Wednesday. District officials said they weren't sure whether Porter was fired or resigned. The school's principal was not available to comment Tuesday, the newspaper said.

Porter left a message to her students on the white board in her room: "Kids, I want you to know that you are never too old to make a mistake, and I made a big one by playing a movie with my 10th-graders. I will forever be sorry for my error in judgment. I want you to know I love each of you and wish you only the best."

Students staged a walkout Tuesday in protest of Porter's departure and members of the community have taken to social media to express their displeasure, using the hashtag #BringMsPorterBack.

"I had a teacher show us 'Braveheart' in school once, and I'm relatively well-adjusted. #bringmsporterback," tweeted Tim Murphy, in response to the social campaign.

Porter declined to comment on the situation.

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