SD61 votes to strike a committee to explore renaming George Jay School

George Jay

The Greater Victoria School Board is moving forward on a call to find a new name for George Jay Elementary.

Trustees voted to strike a committee to develop a process and to explore new naming options.

The school bears the name of a former Victoria School Board Chairman who held the post from 1907 to 1934. George Jay was known for fostering racist policies, including segregating Chinese students from Caucasian students.

He also brought in a regulation forcing only Chinese children to pass an English test before they could attend public schools.

An online school district survey found about half respondents in favour changing the name, with 37% opposed.  Almost 13% said they might support a change if they knew what the naming options were.

The committee will have representation from the Victoria Chinese community, Songhees and Esquimalt Nations, parents and guardians, District 61 and school staff, as well as the Board itself.

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