SALT LAKE CITY – The Salt Lake School District Board of Education voted Tuesday to change the name of Salt Lake City’s Jackson Elementary to Mary Jackson Elementary, after NASA’s first black female engineer.
“It’s been a rewarding experience to watch as our school community has united with our neighborhood community to support a name change. Mary Jackson is a positive role model for all our students, and we are proud to now be the only school in the Salt Lake City School District named for a woman,” said Jackson Elementary School Principal Dr. Jana Edward.
The school was originally named after Andrew Jackson, and many members of the community believed that it warranted a change.
“For several years, faculty and staff at Jackson Elementary had informally discussed a desire to change the school’s name. Last year, the School Community Council at Jackson (comprised of parents and school staff) voted to create a committee tasked with gauging community interest in a formal name change,” the school district said in a statement.
“For the Jackson Elementary School community, it is especially meaningful to be named after a significant figure from a minority background. Nearly 85 percent of Jackson Elementary’s 440 students come from an ethnic minority background,” the school district wrote.
The official renaming of the school will take place during an event planned for later this spring.