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Schools Get Creative in Changing Dicey Names

Don't like Robert E. Lee? Save money and make it stand for a different Lee altogether
By Newser Editors,  Newser Staff
Posted Jun 24, 2019 10:15 AM CDT
The statue of Confederate Gen. Robert E. Lee that stands on Monument Avenue in Richmond, Va.   (AP Photo/Steve Helber)

(Newser) – It's not a revelation that schools around the country are rethinking their names if they were named after Robert E. Lee or other Confederate figures. But as the Wall Street Journal points out, the logistics of a name change can be tough on a school's budget—so school officials are getting creative. Consider the plight of Robert E. Lee High School in Texas, which was looking at a $1.3 million bill to replace its "Lee High School" signs, field logos, uniforms, etc. Solution? Change the name of the school to the Legacy of Educational Excellence, or LEE High School. The move shaved $1 million off the cost of the changes. And as it turns out, the school isn't unique in its thinking:

  • A Houston school shifted its namesake from Confederate solider Sidney Lanier to a late former mayor, Bob Lanier.
  • An Austin school went from being named for Robert E. Lee to photographer Russell Lee.
  • An Oklahoma school also was named for the general, but no more: It's now named for philanthropist Adelaide Lee.
Read the full article for more examples. (Elsewhere, vandals seem to have gotten their General Lees confused.)

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