It's impossible to overstate how important it is that Douglass' students — present and future — get an education that prepares them for the future. The statistics are already against many Douglass students. One of those appointed to the new Douglass leadership team is Joyce Henderson, a former student of the late civil rights activist Clara Luper and a retired Oklahoma City Public Schools educator with nearly four decades of experience.
If anyone has a vision of what Douglass needs — a future that equals and pays homage to its incredibly important past — Henderson does. As a segregated school and even as a fledgling integrated school, Douglass produced some of our city's most storied personalities, from football players to judges to entrepreneurs to city leaders.
Oklahoma City needs all of its schools to achieve excellence. But Douglass' unique place in our city's history, and its importance to the northeast Oklahoma City community, is unparalleled. Its students deserve a restoration befitting its proud history.