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Ceremony held to honor Lee Elementary school's name change to Council Oak

Posted at 12:20 PM, May 10, 2019
and last updated 2019-05-10 13:28:40-04

TULSA, Okla. — On Friday morning, a name dedication ceremony was held at Council Oak Elementary School, Tulsa's oldest elementary school.

In attendance were the school district's deputy superintendent, principal, members of the Muscogee Creek Nation and more than 400 elementary students and staff members.

The purpose of the ceremony was to honor the new name change from Lee Elementary.

"We see that the name change is more in a neutral way, and now we're looking at nature as the name," said Ben Yahola, a Muscogee Creek Nation citizen.

For 100 years, the school was known as Robert E. Lee Elementary, but the school district changed it in 2018 after many found it racially insensitive.

Lee was a confederate general who led the South to fight on the side of slavery.

The school district changed the name twice from Robert E. Lee to just Lee and finally Council Oak.

The school principal said at the ceremony that many parents supported the new name.

“I think that throughout this entire process what we have learned is how strong the community is. We're all here to advocate children and do what's best for them," said Principal Aubrey Flowers.

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