Plans are underway for Woodrow Wilson High School in Tenleytown to get a new name, DCPS communication and engagement officer Shanita Burney announced during a DC Council virtual hearing regarding the school’s renaming on Tuesday, September 15. A specific replacement moniker has not yet been proposed. Replacing the name will cost an estimated $1.2 million due to the cost of changing signs and so forth.
The school has borne Wilson’s name since 1935, a tribute to the president who led the country through World War I. But the 28th president was a racist who advocated the resegregation of government jobs, which especially stings in a city where merit-based careers in the federal government helped facilitate the growth of a Black middle class.
Wilson High School has been one of the most-discussed institutions during a summer of renamings, and it was on a long list of facilities that the city has recommended to receive new monikers. In addition to the commission’s findings, a petition calling for the renaming of the high school has garnered more than 22,500 signatures, and Mayor Bowser also stated that she thought the school should receive a new name during a June press conference.