Let's rename Woodrow Wilson Elementary School

Let's rename Woodrow Wilson Elementary School

July 1, 2020
Petition to
Superintendent Robert Tremblay and 1 other
Signatures: 1,592Next Goal: 2,500
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Why this petition matters

Started by Jonathan Rivers

"Not everything that is faced can be changed; but nothing can be changed until it is faced."

-James Baldwin

“The mission of the Framingham Public Schools, a system that understands and values our diversity, is to educate each student to learn and live productively as a critically thinking, responsible citizen in a multicultural, democratic society by providing academically challenging instructional programs taught by a highly qualified and diverse staff and supported by comprehensive services in partnership with our entire community.”

-FPS Mission Statement

Framingham's Woodrow Wilson Elementary School is named after the 28th President of the United States. Our history books remember President Wilson as a progressive, and in many ways he was, however he also committed much of his presidency to racist policies, especially segregation.

In 1915, Wilson chose “Birth of a Nation” to be the first movie ever shown at the White House.  The movie glorifies the Ku Klux Klan and other white men as the heroes, and portrays black people (white people wearing blackface) as violent and unintelligent. Wilson supported the KKK through his entire presidency.

Before Wilson was elected, the federal government was mostly integrated. One of the most bitter blows to black American’s was his policies to segregate government offices. In fact, under his administration the IRS fired all of it’s black employees. Wilson also terminated 15 out of the 17 black supervisors who had been previously appointed to federal jobs.

There are plenty of sources that highlight just how deep and devastating Wilson’s racist policies were. 


A Few.

And we are not alone in this movement to remove his name from our school. On June 27th, Princeton University’s president announced that they would finally be removing the namesake of their “Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs”. A high school in Washington D.C. currently has a similar petition with nearly 20,000 signatures. Additionally, these schools in Dallas, Portland, Long Beach, Long Branch, Middletown, and Camden have either petitioned or already changed their names.

Former First Lady Michelle Obama has even commended Princeton University's decision by tweeting "Heartened to see my alma mater make this change, and even prouder of the students who’ve been advocating for this kind of change on campus for years. Let’s keep finding ways to be more inclusive to all students—at Princeton and at every school across the country."

If Framingham Public Schools truly believes in their mission to foster “a system that understands and values our diversity” then we must remove this racist namesake from our school. We look forward to discussions on who would be a better representation of our values and goals.

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Signatures: 1,592Next Goal: 2,500
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Decision Makers

  • Robert TremblaySuperintendent
  • Yvonne SpicerMayor