What there is to know
- President Andrew Jackson’s name will no longer appear on a South Philadelphia school.
- Unanimously, the Philadelphia School Board decided to rename the school to Fanny Jackson Coppin.
- Jackson Coppin was a teacher and principal in Philadelphia during her remarkable life.
By a unanimous vote, the Philadelphia School District Board of Directors voted to remove President Andrew Jackson’s name from an elementary school in South Philadelphia and replace it with the name of a freed slave who dedicated her life to education.
As of July 1, Andrew Jackson Elementary School on South 12th and Federal Streets will be called Fanny Jackson Coppin Elementary School, the school district said.
The school district explained in a press release what led to the name change of a nearly century-old school:
The change comes after several months of engagement with the Jackson Elementary School community, including a series of surveys, focus groups and meetings to discuss potential names who have spoken out about the importance of education. within the diverse community. In the spring, more than 1,100 schools, families and community members responded to a survey for feedback on a final name. A total of four possible names were under review, Fanny Jackson Coppin receiving the most support. ”
Jackson Coppin was born a slave in Washington, DC, but was eventually freed and graduated from Oberlin College in Ohio. according to a biography on the site of its namesake Coppin State University. She has spent her life educating others as a speaker, principal and teacher, with a focus on helping underserved communities. She was a long-time principal of the Institute for Colored Youth, a Quaker school in Philadelphia, until her retirement in 1902.
âFanny Jackson Coppin dedicated her life to education, doing whatever was necessary to ensure that people in underserved communities and women had access to a high quality education,â said Kelly Espinosa, director of Jackson Elementary School. “She understood that education is the best tool to build a positive and productive life and that is a message that still rings true today.”
Jackson was the seventh President of the United States and remains a controversial figure. The Tennessean was a “supporter of state rights and the extension of slavery into the new western territories”, according to History.com.
This story also included his role in the elimination of Native Americans, known as the âTrail of Tearsâ. âFor some, his legacy is tarnished by his role in the forced relocation of Native American tribes living east of the Mississippi,â History.com said.
âThe Philadelphia School District recognizes that school names are an important part of student learning environments and should cultivate a sense of pride in history and traditions, to ensure that all students, staff and families feel respected, seen and heard, âthe neighborhood said.
There is also pressure to remove Jackson from the $ 20 bill and replace him with Harriet Tubman.