Alumni group wants to remove “Columbus” from Waterloo High School name

Waterloo Columbus Catholic School
Waterloo Columbus Catholic School(Waterloo Columbus Catholic School)
Published: Aug. 23, 2021 at 10:44 AM CDT
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WATERLOO, Iowa (KCRG) - A group of alumni and friends of Columbus Catholic High School in Waterloo want to drop the moniker of Christopher Columbus from the school name.

The group started a petition online citing the history of enslavement, sexual abuse and killing of Native Americans linked to Columbus exploration of the Americas as the reason.

“We are convinced that if what we now know about Christopher Columbus was widely known when our school was founded, it would never have been named for him.,” the group wrote online. “And we are convinced that our alma mater should not continue to carry his name.”

The group has approached the Cedar Valley Catholic Schools Board and Archdiocese of Dubuque with the name change request several times over the past year but says those efforts have proven unfruitful thus far. The group also added that the request is not a criticism of the school, its teachers or supporters but is a push to have the name match the school’s values.

“Addressing the wrongdoings of Christopher Columbus is not “cancel culture,” but what we were taught in Catholic schools: “Christian culture,” the group states. “Our efforts to convince the CVCS Board and the Archdiocese of Dubuque to address this moral issue, and to remove the name “Columbus” from our Catholic school have to date been unsuccessful, but we pray and urge that all persons who believe in “Christian culture” and who believe in fairness and social justice will support our effort.”

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