Four elementary school campuses in Dallas Independent School District are being considered for renaming. The Board of Trustees will vote to possibly rename a group of schools named after prominent confederate generals.
The campuses being considered for name changes include Robert E. Lee Elementary, Stonewall Jackson Elementary, Albert Sidney Johnston Elementary and William L. Cabell Elementary schools. The school district’s controversial push to consider renaming the campuses is getting mixed reaction from community members.
”I think it’s dumb,” said Claudia O’Shea. “I mean we didn’t even know the background of the school name until it came to light.”
O’Shea has a granddaughter who attends Cabell Elementary in Farmers Branch. She calls the possibility of the campus being renamed a bad idea.
”We have done so much to educate the kids that, you know, you take pride in being Cabell, you take pride in being a Cabell Charger," she said. "What, now you are going to be just, what, a Charger with no name? No history?”
It's the history of the prominent confederate generals the four identified campuses are named after that has come into question recently. Dallas ISD staff believe their roles in the Confederacy can be perceived as symbols of intolerance in a multi-cultural school district.
Miles away in Oak Cliff, Ruby Campbell says she's been living across the street from Albert Sidney Johnston Elementary for 60 years. Each of her six children attended the school. Campbell says the school and its name are part of the community.
”I think the ones that have been here a long time, like myself, I didn’t know there was any controversy about the name of the school," Campbell said. "And all this just came up recently.”
A vote to rename the campuses in question could mean changing out all signs, banners and logos. Parents believe they would feel a financial pinch if they had to replace uniforms down the line.
The Dallas ISD Board of Trustees will vote on renaming the schools named after confederate figures during its 6 p.m. monthly board meeting at Conrad High School on September 28.