The Alexandria School Board unanimously approved renaming two schools, Matthew Maury Elementary and T.C. Williams High School.
Matthew Maury Elementary School is currently named after a Naval officer who fought for the Confederacy. The school superintendent recommended it be renamed to Naomi L. Brooks Elementary School after an Alexandrian educator, leader, citizen, wife and mother who died last year.
T.C. Williams High School's name will change to Alexandria City High School. The high school was named after T.C. Williams, a racist former superintendent who sought to prevent integration in the 1950s and claimed that Black and white students learn differently.
The school that inspired the 2000 movie "Remember the Titans" will keep that nickname.
The new names were adopted by the Alexandria School Board Thursday and will take effect in July. The school district of 16,000 had sought public input on the renaming.
Last summer, the ACPS launched the Identity Project, a community initiative to rename the schools linked to Alexandria’s racist past.
The Alexandria City School Board voted last November 9-0 in favor of changing the names of both schools.
"We hope that this will be the start of further discussions around how we can change our systems from within,” said School Board Student Representative Lorraine Johnson.
ACPS has students from more than 145 countries speaking 132 different languages.
The goal of the school board is to put racial equity at the heart of every decision that is made. School board officials said changing a school name is a symbolic step and is a step toward its division's 2025 Strategic Plan: Equity for All.