Meet New ACT Prep Teacher Dr.Barnes


Ella Bramlett

Dr. Barnes goes over an ACT practice test during class.

Tupelo High School has a new Act Prep teacher this year, Dr. Oswald Barnes. Dr.Barnes helps students better understand the ACT test in order to get a higher score. Dr.Barnes is hearing impaired, he has faced challenges and successes  throughout his life. 

Dr. Barnes is originally from Brandon MS.  He was born deaf and when he was  younger the doctors wouldn’t let him have hearing aids, fearing the volume would blow out his ears. As a child he missed out on a lot.

 “I was punished as a child because my parents thought that I was being bad. They didn’t know I was deaf until I was in second grade.” Barnes said. 

 Most of his life he read lips and did writing assignments instead of being able to participate with the class. He then went to College in Edinburgh, Scotland. His PhD degree was research only so he didn’t have to go to class. 

When he was 24 years old he got his first hearing aid and finally was able to hear more clearly.

“ When I put on my new hearing aid, I heard my stomach growl and it was weird. I’ve never been able to hear it before. I went outside and I heard birds for the first time and I went to the church and heard the pipe organ and I just cried tears of joy.” Dr. Barnes said. 

Dr.Barnes makes sure to live life to its fullest and doesn’t take anything for granted. He has run 17 marathons. He has written a book. He can play the pipe organ and piano, and he can speak 5 languages. 

Barnes taught at Belhaven College for two years and he has taught at the middle and high school in Hulca and 7 other schools in the span of 19 years. 

“My biggest accomplishment in life is the students I’ve taught”, “And how they are now successful in life.” Barnes said.