*T.I. was spotted at New York’s 1Oak Tuesday night proclaiming to the club crowd that he’s back following his seven-month prison stint on weapons charges.
“He got behind the deejay booth with DJ Sal Morale and yelled, ‘I’m king, and I’m back!'” a fellow clubber told the New York Daily News. “The deejay then played T.I.’s song ‘I’m Back,’ and the crowd went wild.”
The rapper, whose real name is Clifford Harris Jr., was released from federal prison in Forrest City, Arkansas last December to serve the remainder of a reduced 366-day sentence in a correctional center in his native Atlanta.
Meanwhile, Georgia’s WSBTV.com is reporting that controversy is brewing over T.I.’s recent visit to a school in Henry County and the school principal’s e-mail exchanges with a parent who complained about it.
After corresponding with Woodland Middle School principal Dr. Terry Oatts for six weeks, Tom Myers, who has four daughters in the Henry County School System, contacted Channel 2 reporter Justin Farmer to share the e-mails he exchanged with Oatts regarding the selection of T.I. as a guest speaker.
Myers told Farmer that he and his wife, Candi, as well as other parents, want to know ahead of time who will be talking to their children during school assemblies. In an e-mail to Oatts, Myers took issue with the selection of T.I.’s visit because he is a convicted felon.
Myers wrote an e-mail to Oatts, which read in part: “In the future, if T.I. or any other convicted felon needs to perform community service, ask for parental permission to allow our children to be exposed to these questionable individuals.”
Oatts, according to Myers, replied with the following e-mail: “I thought about asking a guy who snorted cocaine and got arrested for DUI when he was 30 to come and speak to our kids, but President George W. Bush was not available.”
“I could not believe that he would put that in an e-mail or that he would say that,” said Myers.
A representative for Henry County Schools confirmed that T.I. did speak at Woodland on March 5 and that parents were not notified in advance. The representative went on to say that there is no current policy for notification, even though for a recent World War II documentary about the Holocaust shown at school, parents were notified in advance and had the ability to opt out.
In another e-mail from Oatts to Myers, Oatts said: “Mr. Harris has never been convicted of homicide. We would not be able to adequately staff our states general assembly, our U.S. Congress or the executive branch of our government using your apparent standards.”
School officials told Farmer that they were very surprised to hear about the e-mail exchange and said they are now looking into it. They also said they’ll look into the speaker’s policy.