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MMSD to hold public hearing on potential name change for Madison Memorial High School

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MADISON, Wis. — Madison residents will have the chance to share their thoughts on a potential name change for one of the city’s high schools next week.

The Madison Metropolitan School District is hosting a public hearing Wednesday to consider renaming James Madison Memorial High School. The district set up a committee in April to consider a name change after an alumna pushed for one citing the school’s namesake and former President’s history of owning slaves.

The four names up for consideration are Darlene M. Hancock Memorial High School, Memorial High School, Vel Phillips Memorial High School, and Bruce Dahmen Memorial High School. Wednesday’s hearing was scheduled so the Ad Hoc Citizens’ Renaming Committee can get community input before presenting to the MMSD Board of Education.

The district has not said they’re officially changing the name; community input is still being gathered so the district can make a decision on a new name if they choose to make the change.

Families, students, staff and community members are invited to submit written statements or register to speak at the public hearing. Written statements will b accepted from Monday at noon through Wednesday at 3 p.m. Detailed instructions on how to submit a statement are available on the Board of Education’s website.

Registrations to speak during the hearing will be accepted an hour before the start of the meeting and close at 5 p.m. Instructions on how to register are also available on the Board of Education’s website. Anyone who registered to speak will have three minutes for their statement.

Community members can also share feedback via an online form. Any feedback submitted in that form won’t be read during the hearing but will be shared with the committee.

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