For Immediate Release: May 31, 2022
Contact: Nora Shoptaw (336) 370-8386
Board Approves Katherine Johnson School Name
The K-8 school in the southwest area will named for African-American mathematician
Greensboro, N.C. – A planned K-8 school in Guilford County’s southwest area will be named in honor of NASA mathematician Katherine Johnson.
The Guilford County Schools Board approved the name Katherine G. Johnson School for Science and Mathematics<simbli.eboardsolutions.com/SB_Meetings/ViewMeeting.aspx?S=11102&MID=12702> at its work session Tuesday, after a 30-minute public hearing and 30-day public comment period.
Johnson was an African-American mathematician whose calculations of orbital mechanics as a NASA employee were critical to the success of the first and subsequent U.S. manned spaceflights. The non-fiction book and film, “Hidden Figures,” is based on her work, along with that of her African-American female colleagues Mary Jackson and Dorothy Vaughan, which proved critical to the success of launching astronaut John Glenn into orbit. The Southwest area K-8 school will have a science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) component.
“I noticed a news story about NASA astronaut Jessica Watkins, who will be the first Black woman to spend several months in space about the ISS. The article mentioned that Dr. Watkins had attended the Sally Ride Elementary School enrichment program, where she realized at a very young age that she wanted to study the geology of other planets,” wrote Laura Gonzalez from Greensboro. “This example of the power of names resonated so strongly with me! When we give young people role models and permission to dream, there is no telling what they can achieve.”
About Guilford County Schools
Guilford County Schools, the third largest school district in North Carolina and the 50th largest of more than 14,000 in the United States, serves nearly 70,000 PK-12 students at 126 schools. With approximately 9,800 employees, GCS works in partnership with parents, businesses, colleges and the community to deliver an education that connects student interests and skills with the careers and economy of our future here and around the world. We provide educational choices to meet individual student needs in a culturally diverse citizenship and new opportunities to help our students Soar to Greatness. For more information, visit the district’s website at www.gcsnc.com.
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