Charlottesville Twelve’ member helping to teach students importance of historic anniversary


By Destini Harris September 8, 2023

CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (WVIR) – Friday, September 8, marks 64 years since Charlottesville schools were integrated. A group of 12 Black students bravely walked into what was then an all-white city school.

“They just didn’t integrate overnight. There were people like my mother, Elizabeth Taylor, and other parents that had the courage to stand out,” Alex-Zan, a member of the Charlottesville Twelve, said.

Taylor says it was a no-brainer for her to sign up her son when the opportunity came: “Well, it was printed in the Daily Progress. If you have a child that is soon to be 6 years old and starts school in September, take your child to the nearest school and sign them up,” she said.

Taylor says her son was 7 years old when he entered Venable Elementary School.

Now, the two trailblazers and a group of fourth grade students are coming together to honor and remember history.

“We’re going to pass it on,” Alex-Zan said. “Just another way of just reminding, particularly nationally when they’re trying to rewrite history, and deal with history from another perspective.