A Detroit school named after current Housing and Urban Development Secretary Ben Carson could soon see a name change because of the Republican’s affiliation with President Donald Trump.
Before his political career, Carson was a neurosurgeon at Johns Hopkins University where he was among the first doctors to successfully separate conjoined twins, earning him recognition from Detroit’s Benjamin Carson High School of Science and Medicine.
The Detroit school board, however, voted Tuesday with a 6-1 vote to begin the process of changing the school’s name, saying residents of the area “don’t support the [Trump] administration.”
The school board can now change the names of buildings if “the community of the geographic area where the school is located requests a name change that more closely aligns with the history of the locality,” or if “information newly discovered about the current name of the school is negative in nature,” according to The Detroit News.
Carson himself was a graduate of the district in which the school bearing his name resides, but Board Member Lamar Lemmons explicitly objected to Carson’s political affiliations.
Just one member of the school board voted against the measure, saying that “there are probably other places where staff could be spending their time,” The Detroit Free Press reports.
But Superintendent Nikolai Vitti seems to be on board with the proposal, and claims that the project isn’t “overwhelming to where we’ll lose focus of our core mission and work.
Tuesday’s vote doesn’t guarantee that the name will be changed, but it does mean that the process will move forward and district leaders will begin seeking input from the community, who likely will be on board with a change.
Residents of Detroit consistently vote Democratic, and their Democratic loyalty was perhaps most evident during the midterms, when Republican John James, who is African American, received just 4.8 percent of the vote in the area.
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