AUSTIN, Texas (FOX 7 Austin) - Earlier this month, the Austin Independent School District demolished L.C. Anderson High School, a historic black high school in Austin.
The important cultural and educational building was brought to the ground, leaving the public who cherished the building confused and disappointed because the District had given them no warning, according to former Austin City Council member Ora Houston.
On Monday, Ms. Ora Houston testified to the Board of Trustees, saying "It was the responsibility of the District to disclosed to the community, changes to the preservation plan before the demolition commenced."
The majority of ex-students in the community and throughout the country, who this school was important to, found out after the building was completely deconstructed by word of mouth or because they drove by and saw it, she argued to the Board of Trustees.
"The students on the west coast who comprise the So. California/Nevada/ Arizona Chapter of the Original L.C. Anderson High School are extremely shocked to hear that our school has been completely demolished," said President of the Chapter, Dorothy Franklin-Henderson. "We have looked forward to the next Reunion to meet in the gymnasium, particularly, where old friendships and acquaintances are shared. What a sad day for us! "
Eva Goins Simmons states, "After many collaborative meetings, we came to a very reasonable compromise. A compromise that would include the new project while maintaining part of the historical aspects of the East Austin Community significant to the African American Community. We dared to think and trust that we could work with you in a civil way and realize the agreed to outcome. This has not been the case. We have worked with deceitful individuals or liars! A 1956 graduate reminded me that political decisions have consequences. It's called voting!"
Houston and others are demanding answers from the district regarding why they did not give notice to the public prior to the demolition and want to ensure that AISD will provide in person, regular updates as the preservation plan is implemented, as they had done in the past.