Public hearings set regarding Hampton schools with Confederate names

WAVY/Jason Marks

HAMPTON, Va. (WAVY) — The Hampton School Board has scheduled two public hearings for over the next few months regarding a request to rename two schools named after Confederate figures.

Organizations including the Hampton NAACP have recently called for Jefferson Davis Middle School and the Campus at Lee — which used to be Robert E. Lee Elementary School — to be renamed.

In August, the organization expressed that it felt the names represent negative parts of history. The Southern Christian Leadership Conference (SCLC) has also called for this renaming.

Hearing have been scheduled for Oct. 26 at Syms Middle School and Nov. 8 at Hampton High School. Both meetings are scheduled to run from 6:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.

In a news release about the hearings, the school board included a document outlining how schools are named and renamed.

According to its policy, the Hampton School Board is responsible for naming all district schools, and renaming schools when it is deemed appropriate.

This policy mentions that elementary and middle schools will be named in honor of people who “rendered outstanding service to mankind in their community, state, and/or country.”

Part of the Hampton NAACP’s argument for renaming the schools is that Robert E. Lee and Jefferson Davis do not fit the school board’s standards.