The Montgomery County Board of Education voted Tuesday night to change the names of Jefferson Davis, Robert E. Lee, and Sidney Lanier high schools — each named after men who were members of the Confederacy.
About a week later in Montgomery, on the state's holiday commemorating Confederate President Jefferson Davis' birthday, protesters removed the statue of Confederate Gen. Lee, which faced north in front of Lee High, from its pedestal.
About 10 community members signed up to speak on the topic ahead of the vote — half requesting the name changes and the other half requesting the district make a distinction between Lanier and the other two schools.
Tensions spiked following the public comment section of the meeting, with District 1's Board Member Lesa Keith responding directly to one commenter, a Black woman who is a former student of Keith's at Lee High.
In November 1965 — a century after the end of the Civil War — a three-person committee suggested the new Carter Hill Road high school be named, “in memory of Jefferson Davis, the first and last president of the Confederate States of America.”