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Former Confederate-named Petersburg schools get new names and marquees

PETERSBURG, Va. — After a robust community engagement process, the Petersburg School Board voted in February to change the names of three elementary schools from Confederate generals to neighborhood names.

The change took effect July 1, and on Tuesday the signs in front of the three schools were updated to reflect the new names.

Pleasants Lane Elementary was previously named  J.E.B. Stuart Elementary. Cool Spring Elementary was previously named A.P. Hill Elementary. Lakemont Elementary was previously named Robert E. Lee Elementary.

The cost for the renaming  was estimated at about $18,000, but the school system had already received the funds. A private citizen donated $20,000 to the school system on January 11 for the anticipated cost.

The estimated cost includes changing lettering on the buildings, updating outdoor signs, replacing the top section of stage curtains, replacing doormats and removing the name from Lee’s gym floor.

Petersburg City Public Schools will offer the old signs and additional items with the previous names for sale on www.govdeals.com.

School leaders said the old signs should be for sale on that website within the next few days.