Education · Visalia

Visalia Unified to pull Black Lives Matter posters from high school fence

Black Lives Matter posters placed along the fence line of Visalia’s El Diamante High School are officially coming down, Visalia Unified School District officials announced Monday.

The signs – placed along the school’s fence line at the corner of Akers Street and Wagner Avenue – have been a point of contention in the city, with a group of women visiting the school last week to pull down signs plastered by students and Visalia neighbors.

Visalia Unified Superintendent Tamara Ravalin announced the sign removal was decision was made out of “concerns for the safety and well-being of students.”

“What started as student-initiated and student-led expression has now led to multiple disruptive incidents causing concern regarding student safety and potential damage to the District’s property,” a letter from Ravalin reads.

All signs will be removed beginning Friday. The district had already removed signs placed on the fence line that contained “obscenities, profanity, threats, or vulgarity.”

In place of sign-posting, Ravalin announced that Visalia Unified will transition the discussion of the current climate of race relations to a student forum on Tuesday.

“The purpose of this forum is to provide a space where student input and opinions related to the current nationwide and local conversations about racism and social injustice can be shared,” Ravalin wrote.

Photo: Screengrab of video via Allen Dimick

Alex Tavlian
Alex Tavlian is the Executive Editor of The San Joaquin Valley Sun and Executive Director of Valley Future Foundation. You can reach Alex at alex.tavlian@sjvsun.com.