2018 marked the 100th anniversary of the Robert E. Lee Elementary School in Tulsa, Okla. There may or may not be a 101st year. Critics believe that the school should be re-named because Lee owned slaves and led the Confederacy on the battlefield. Supporters believe the name should be preserved because expunging discredited names can obliterate lessons from history.

In November 2017, the students in Larry Cagle’s Advanced Placement Seminar and Research courses at Edison Prep High School in Tulsa heard arguments on both sides of the issue and questioned a distinguished panel of community leaders, professors and parents.

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William Gormley is professor of public policy and co-director of the Center for Research on Children in the U.S. at Georgetown University in Washington, D.C., and author of The Critical Advantage: Developing Critical Thinking Skills in School.

Reprinted with permission from the April 2018 issue of School Administrator magazine, published by AASA, The School Superintendents Association.