Paul Lawrence Peeler, Sr.: First African American Teacher in Modern Pittsburgh Public Schools


Pennsylvania abolished discrimination in education in 1881, but nonetheless, no teachers or administrators of African descent were hired in the Pittsburgh Public Schools for the next 52 years. Educator Ralph Proctor asserts that PPS did not hire a single teacher of African descent from 1881 until 1933, and then it took until 1937 for the first full-time teacher to be hired — Paul Lawrence Peeler, Sr.
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