In 1974, Clarence Bailey was elected to the Longview ISD college board as its first Black trustee — now he will be honored with a campus named just after him.
Bailey was elected four several years following Longview ISD built-in its faculties. The board’s variety has progressed leaps and bounds given that that time. These days, the vast majority of trustees are not white — reflecting the pupil demographics of the district— and the board is led by Shan Bauer, a Black girl.
The board voted Wednesday to honor Bailey by changing the identify of South Ward Elementary College to Clarence W. Bailey Elementary University.
Bauer claimed she was happy to be capable to make that transform.
“It’s just one of those people matters to wherever, as a member of this group and a member within just the local community that I provide — to see our initial Black college board member, that he had the sheer will and satisfaction and honor to move forward during these kinds of an not sure time to make guaranteed that these who appeared like him had a fair share in the conversations when it came to educating our little ones — when it came time for him to consider that move, that leap of religion, and being brave sufficient to do so, that warrants that honor that he was bestowed,” Bauer mentioned.
“I feel that as a member of this board and as a member of the community he served within just, it’s just an honor that I’m ready to be right here as board president and witness this adjust take spot and not only recognizing Mr. Bailey, but justifying his steps,” she claimed. “It took a lot of power and sheer will to do what he did.”
An formal unveiling ceremony is prepared, but particulars have not been finalized, Bauer explained.
Superintendent James Wilcox explained the district is psyched for the possibility to honor Bailey. He stated there is no unique reason South Ward was picked out as the campus to be named immediately after him.
Bailey died in February, but his daughter, Sherry Smith, said she needs he was still below to see this materialize since he would be grateful and stunned.
Smith, who lives in Arlington, explained she went to South Ward, and it is particular to see a university she attended named after her father.
South Ward opened in 1936 and served Black pupils all through segregation.
Smith said this would be her father’s greatest accomplishment since he thought in training for all people.
“I just try to remember when he ran for faculty board, he was really enthusiastic,” she stated. “I try to remember him staying so energized. He reported, ‘I truly want to do this and operate. I know there has not been anybody Black on the board, but I think I can do this and make a modify not just for black college students but everybody.’ “
In reminiscing about her father, Smith reported he was doing whichever he could to get the word out that he was running for the board. He visited lots of universities all through his marketing campaign.
“It was difficult in a great deal of ways,” she claimed. “He in some cases was like, ‘I do not know if I should say it this way or go this course,’ but he would say, ‘I’ll attempt it in any case.’ He was so energetic about running.”
Bailey graduated from Mary C. Womack High University in 1950. He then attended Wiley School and gained a diploma in physical training and biology.
Smith explained he also attended university in Des Moines, Iowa, and obtained a master’s degree in psychology.
“He wished to assistance younger individuals even more their schooling,” she said.
Bailey would go on to serve as a teacher and coach for Longview ISD for seven a long time. He served on numerous committees of the Longview Chamber of Commerce, and the advisory committee for VOE of Longview High School. For 8 decades, he served as a trustee on the board of administrators at was then was Great Shepard Hospital .
He also was a reserve officer for the Gregg County Sheriff’s Business office and finance chairman on the board of administrators for Wiley College.
He also was an affiliate pastor of Bethel Missionary Baptist Church in Longview.
Smith mentioned even at 87, her father was nonetheless singing and preaching in his nursing residence.
“I do don’t forget him expressing that, ‘I’m not just about the Black group but I do want to make certain they get their schooling, but I want to be for all people that wishes their education and learning,’ “ Smith stated. “He would be so honored for this. I can actually see him smiling with his head down like, ‘I simply cannot believe this would transpire to me.’ He tried out to help and aid as a lot of people he could.”