York Region District School Board votes to rename Vaughan Secondary School, mentioning namesake’s racist past

Vaughan Secondary School

The York Region District School Board  (YRDSB) has graduated to rename a Vaughan high school which bears the title of their town’s creator owing to his former ago.

In a statement published on Wednesday that the school committee stated it will proceed to alter the title of Vaughan Secondary School, situated on Clark Avenue, just east of Dufferin Street at Thornhill.

“It’s essential that our education system is reactive to the lived experiences of most our members, such as families and students of the community,” YRDSB Chair Juanita Nathan said in a statement Wednesday. “Pupils, staff members and families may still continue to feel pleased about being part of the school and a college community which centers fairness and inclusivity and reveals a dedication to anti-Black racism.”

The movement follows a revived debate about whether these spaces and institutions named after people with displaced pasts need to continue to keep their names.

An analysis by employees in the faculty board notes Vaughan Secondary School, which opened 1989 and currently serves a varied community of about 1,150 pupils, is called after the City Of Vaughan as opposed to its creator.

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But, the report says that renaming the faculty could be a means for the committee to”show its commitment to racial justice generally as well as removing anti-Black racism specifically.”

Benjamin Vaughan was a Jamaican-born British parliamentarian who owned slaves and also vehemently asserted against end slavery. According to the report, Vaughan additionally contended that enslavement has been”great for Africans.”

Vaughan perished in 1835.

The team report voices concern that Black pupils'”sense of belonging and also well-being” will likely be negatively influenced by the institution’s name on an continuing basis and states that it’s”unthinkable” that they ought to need to learn at a construction”that communicates the title of a person who watched their ancestors since uncivilized beings deserving of becoming chattel or land to be possessed.”

“Addressing anti-Black racism is a priority for York Region District School Board,” Director of Education Louise Sirisko stated in a declaration. “The title of a college ought to be encouraged by the local community and supply opportunities for pupils, parents and community members to be more motivated to understand.”

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An internet request in June urged the town to modify its title. Vaughan City Council has up to now resisted that telephone, preferring rather to rename the August civic holiday to prior Lieutenant-Governor John Graves Simcoe instead of Benjamin Vaughan.

The report estimates that the costs related to altering the institution’s name at roughly $90,000.

More information about the vetting procedure are anticipated to be published in a later date. For the time being, the faculty has eliminated”Vaughan” from thumping in the front part of the building.

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Michael Turner

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