HISD trustee to meet with Lanier MS community on name change

January 21, 2016 By:Charlotte Aguilar

School News

The promised community meeting to discuss whether the name of Lanier Middle School should be changed has been set for 6 p.m. Feb. 3 at the school, 2600 Woodhead St.

The campus is one of eight in an HISD proposal to remove the names of schools whose namesakes have ties with the Confederacy and to work with each school community to select a new name.

Lanier and Johnston middle schools and Davis and Reagan high schools were pulled from that list at their respective trustees’ request until each trustee could hold a meeting with the schools’ stakeholders.

Newly-elected District IV Trustee Jolanda Jones telegraphed her intent to vote for the name change in social media messages prior to the board meeting Jan. 14 but was persuaded to delay the Lanier decision until she could hold the meeting at the school. The board is expected to address the issue again at its Feb. 11 meeting.

Sidney Lanier, for whom the school is named, was a conscripted private in the Confederate army who later went on to become a noted poet and advocate for the healing of divisions between the North and South. A number of those connected with the school and outside the Lanier community have said that he does not fit the HISD criteria of being a “Confederate leader” and that the school should retain his name.

The HISD board voted to move forward with the renaming of Dowling, Grady and Jackson middle schools and Lee High School at its January meeting.

The letter from Lanier MS Principal Felicia Adams announcing a community meeting on the proposal to change the school's name.

The letter from Lanier MS Principal Felicia Adams announcing a community meeting on the proposal to change the school’s name.


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2 Responses to “HISD trustee to meet with Lanier MS community on name change”

  1. Ron Ford Says:

    It seems to me this man was regular Joe who had qualities that would allow him to continue to be named in his memory for a school. That school would be among many schools named for him. Not because he was a private in the Confederate but for his life in general.

    take a look;

  2. EJM Says:

    I do not believe the Principal of Lanier Middle School crafted this letter. I believe the language which includes the very biased words “the Confederate name” was provided by Ms. Jones to signal her preconceived and uneducated conclusions about Mr. Lanier. She needs to read his history to recognize that he is no more an icon of the Confederacy than any random Vietnam War vet or Iraq War vet is for being obligated to fight in a war that they may neither have sought or believed in the cause. I believe Ms Jones wishes to take a school that has one of the best academic, fine arts and sports programs in the state and name it after herself or her designee. Sidney Lanier was a musician, a poet (who decried war) and an accomplished academian, all things that Lanier Middle School’s International Baccalaureate Programs espouses.

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