Panel recommends renaming school honoring Atlanta editor

ATLANTA (AP) — A committee is recommending that an Atlanta school now named for a newspaper editor who advocated for white supremacy after the Civil War be renamed for a Mississippi-born Black journalist who exposed atrocities including lynchings.

An Atlanta school board panel recommended Tuesday that Henry W. Grady High School be renamed in honor of Ida B. Wells.

Board member Leslie Gran told the Atlanta Journal-Constitution that the views of Grady do not “reflect the values that we want to carry forward."

While credited by many with helping in the rebirth of Atlanta after the war, Grady also wrote editorials and gave speeches that ignored the plight of Black people in the region while endorsing white supremacy. He was an editor and part-owner of The Atlanta Constitution.

Born during the war in Holly Springs, Mississippi, Wells became a journalist and activist whose work exposed racism and lynching. She died in 1931.

The full school board is set to consider the name change Nov. 2. A committee to consider a name change was formed during protests over the police killing of George Floyd in Minnesota.