HAMPTON, Va. (WVEC) -- A school site formerly named after Robert E. Lee no longer will have a reference to the Confederate general.
Robert E. Lee Elementary School closed in 2010. The property since was called "The Campus at Lee" and houses adult and alternative programs.
The school division said Tuesday that, effective immediately, the location would be named "Hampton City Schools Adult and Alternative Center."
For years, groups asked that the Hampton School Board remove Lee's name from the property. Interest in removing the name rekindled recently, and the school board revisited the issue.
Because the property was no longer a "school" officially, the naming or renaming of it was not subject to board governance pursuant to School Board Policy FFA. Instead, it was an administrative function. The board requested that school division staff members create a process to consider potential new names which reflected either the location or programs offered.
Students and staff members in the programs at the campus came up with names. They selected their top choices, which led to the "Hampton City Schools Adult and Alternative Learning Center" moniker.
President of the Hampton Branch of the NAACP Gaylene Kanoyton said in a statement, in part:
We are happy that Hampton City Schools have renamed the campus of Lee...We stand behind Hampton City Schools policy on naming or renaming of elementary & middle schools after people that have contributed outstanding service to mankind in their city,state and or country.
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