During its April 12, 2018 meeting, the Montgomery County Board of Education voted to name the new elementary school in the Richard Montgomery cluster Bayard Rustin Elementary School. This school will be the 206th school in MCPS. Read about the school's namesake below.
Bayard Rustin was a believer in non-violence, a socialist, a civil rights organizer, and an openly gay black man. He was born on March 17, 1912 in West Chester, Pennsylvania and raised by his maternal grandparents, who exposed him to the Quaker Religion and civil rights activities and organizations, including the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP). Rustin attended Wilberforce University in Ohio and Cheyney State Teachers College in Pennsylvania. He was involved with several student organizations, including the Omega Psi Phi Fraternity.
Rustin played a major role in the civil rights and equality movements of the 1940s, 1950s and 1960s. He was active in the Young Communist League, Fellowship of Reconciliation, Congress of Racial Equality (CORE), and the Southern Christian Leadership Conference (SCLC). Rustin was instrumental in organizing, coordinating, and marketing the 1963 March on Washington, where the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. gave his “I Have a Dream” speech.
(Excerpted from the National Archives Rediscovering Black History blog)
Learn more about Bayard Rustin
The naming process for the school began in February with the Board of Education suggesting four names. The Board asked that a School Naming Advisory Committee be formed to consider those names, as well as look at other suggestions from the community. The committee was chaired by Mrs. Rachel DuBois, the principal of the new school, and included community members and parents of students who will attend the school.
The School Naming Advisory Committee considered five names: Bayard Rustin, Mary McLeod Bethune, Emily Catherine Edmonson, Josiah Henson, and Lillian Beatrice Brown. While the recommendation of the committee is taken very seriously, the final decision rests with the Board of Education, according to MCPS Regulation FFA-RA, Naming School Facilities.