‘Jackson Reed’ front-runner in renaming of DC’s Woodrow Wilson High

D.C.’s Woodrow Wilson High School will soon have a new name and one option is the clear front-runner.

Many current and former D.C. residents testified in support of the name “Jackson Reed High School,” during a D.C. Council meeting on Thursday.

“I cannot think of any more deserving educators for the renaming of Wilson High School than Edna B. Jackson, teacher, and Vincent E. Reed, principal of Wilson and later DCPS superintendent,” said former Wilson High school Principal Michael Durso.

Jackson was the school’s first Black teacher. Reed was the school’s first Black principal.

But some people, such as former D.C. resident Leyland Barrows, are not in favor of “Jackson Reed.”

“However much Reed may have been a distinguished administrator, putting two names together, I think, tends to cheapen both of them,” Barrows said.

The D.C. Council will accept comments on the bill to rename the District’s largest public high school until 5 p.m. Nov. 15.

It has been considering the “Jackson Reed” name since last month.

People who want the name changed point to segregationist policies supported by Woodrow Wilson, the 28th president.

Historians say when Wilson, a two-term Democratic president, entered the White House in 1913 and segregated the civil service, some African Americans who worked for the federal government, including supervisors, were demoted.

When a final naming decision will be made has yet to be announced.

Like WTOP on Facebook and follow @WTOP on Twitter to engage in conversation about this article and others.

Get breaking news and daily headlines delivered to your email inbox by signing up here.

© 2021 WTOP. All Rights Reserved. This website is not intended for users located within the European Economic Area.

More from WTOP

Log in to your WTOP account for notifications and alerts customized for you.

Sign up