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Voters favor changing Lee High’s name, narrow margins want to keep Andrew Jackson & Ribault

Thousands of ballots cast in school name change polling across 9 schools; Lee sees most participation

After months of rallying, speaking out and voting, the results are counted on the push to rename nine schools in the Duval County School District.

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – The results of weeks of community balloting at nine Duval County Schools being considered for renaming were counted and released to the public Wednesday evening, giving solid support to changing the name of Robert E. Lee High School and several other schools.

But voters want to keep the name of two other high schools and one middle school.

The results of these pseudo-elections will not ultimately determine whether the schools named for controversial historical figures could get new names, but they’ll inform superintendent Dr. Diana Greene in her recommendation to the school board. The board is expected to vote on all nine school names during its June 1 meeting.

According to DCPS school board chair Elizabeth Anderson, Greene’s recommendation to the School Board on the school name changes will be publicly available on Tuesday.

Stakeholders, including alumni, students, employees, PTA members and those that live in the respective school’s attendance zone were given a two-week period to cast a ballot. Those who qualified for multiple stakeholder groups were allowed to vote multiple times.

The results are as follows:

Robert E. Lee High School

  • 58.6% of 6,513 votes support changing the name
  • The most popular alternative was Riverside High School (44.7%)

Andrew Jackson High School

  • 51.3% of 751 votes support keeping the name
  • The second most popular name was Eastside High School (17.7%)

Jean Ribault High School

  • 85% of 730 votes supported keeping the name
  • The second-most popular name was Northside High School

Jefferson Davis Middle School

  • 90.4% of 155 votes support name change
  • The most popular names were Westside Middle School (61.3%) and Charger Academy (20.6%)

Kirby-Smith Middle School

  • 55.9% of 721 votes for changing the name
  • The most popular alternative was Springfield Middle School (29.2%)

J.E.B. Stuart Middle School

  • 89.5% of 323 votes support changing the name
  • Most popular: Westside Middle School (57.6%) or Warrior Academy (12.4%)

Jean Ribault Middle School

  • 84.4% supported keeping the name
  • The most popular name other than Jean Ribault Middle was Northside Middle School (11.8%)

Joseph Finegan Elementary School

  • 84% of 167 votes support the name change
  • The most popular names were Anchor Academy (35%) and Wonderwood Elementary School (27.5%)

Stonewall Jackson Elementary School

  • 81.4% of 141 votes support the name change
  • The most popular names were Westside Academy (41.3%) and Hidden Oaks Elementary (23.9%)

About the Author:

Joe covers education and breaking news. He is a frequent contributor to the News4Jax I-team and Trust Index coverage.