HANOVER, Va. (WWBT) -The Hanover County School Board will take up the hot topic issue of changing the name of two schools that are named after Confederate leaders on Friday afternoon.
This move comes after a big push and a lawsuit by the Hanover NAACP who says it violates the right’s of students and disrupts learning.
“For decades, students in Hanover County have been forced to attend schools barring the names of Confederate leaders,” Hanover NAACP President Robert Barnette said.
Many want the names of Lee Davis High School and Stonewall Jackson Middle School changed.
“To be called a ‘Confederate’ or ‘rebel’ is derogatory,” Barnette said.
The Hanover NAACP filed a lawsuit against the school system and Hanover County back in August.
The lawsuit claims students’ 1st and 14th Amendment rights are being violated, and also their rights under the Equal Education Opportunity Act.
According to a school representative, Hanover County has been dropped from the lawsuit. The school system is the only target.
“The school board has refused to change these symbols of racial injustices,” Barnette said.
A spokesperson for the Hanover County School system confirms the school board will hold a special closed meeting on Nov. 22 at 2 p.m. to discuss ways to resolve the lawsuit.
If they don’t find a resolve, it could cost the school system hundreds of thousands of dollars and could last for years. If the NAACP wins, the school board could be responsible for their legal fees which are expected to reach several million dollars.
“The Hanover County Chapter of the NAACP supports the Hanover County School Board’s proposal to resolve the open lawsuit quickly and efficiently and invest in a more equitable Hanover County Public Schools," said Barnette on Wednesday morning.
It’s not an easy fix or decision to change the names and mascots. If the school board decides to make the change, it could cost nearly $500,000.
If you live in the county and want to voice your opinion, you can reach out to your school board member before the meeting.
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