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Decatur School Board seeking to rename Renfroe Middle School

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Decatur School Board seeking to rename Renfroe Middle School

Beacon Hill Middle, formerly known as Carl G. Renfroe Middle School, City Schools of Decatur, W. College Avenue.

This story has been updated. 

Decatur, GA — The City Schools of Decatur School Board is inviting the community to submit name suggestions in order to rename Renfroe Middle School.

In October 2021, the school board revised the district’s policy related to naming and renaming schools. The policy now requires that “school buildings where students attend will be given names of local communities, neighborhoods, streets and landmarks.”

The name recommended cannot be a duplicate, cause confusion, or otherwise conflict with the names of existing facilities within City Schools of Decatur.

“Therefore, in accordance with our policy, we are embarking on a process to rename Renfroe Middle School, and we are inviting the entire CSD community to participate in the process,” Dr. Fehrman’s Friday Follow Up newsletter stated.

The community can submit nominations of names until April 15. To submit a name, click here.

While the policy appears to single out Renfroe Middle School, School Board Chair Jana Johnson-Davis said that is not the case.

“The policy change was not targeting any particular school,” Johnson-Davis said. “Renfroe is our only school that is named after an individual instead of a local community, neighborhood, street, or landmark as stated in the new policy.”

In the fall of 2021, the board heard from many concerned residents, including students, about the current name of the middle school.

“The Board recognizes that selecting a name for a school building is a vital component of its public image,” Johnson-Davis said. “After a great deal of discussion, we decided to change the School Naming and Renaming policy and ensure names selected for buildings where students attend reflect honorably on the City Schools of Decatur and the community.”

The board waited until now to change the name to make sure it had a process established that was clear and well-thought-out. The school board also wanted the name change to coincide with the end of the school year, so the district could process the name change and rebranding over the summer, she added.

A petition has been circulating for months criticizing former superintendent Carl Renfroe’s record on desegregating the school district. Attempts by Decaturish to confirm the allegations listed in the petition have been unsuccessful.

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