Rename Willowbrook Middle School - Dr. Lawrence C. Freeman Academy
You have the opportunity to recognize and reward the invaluable contributions to the City of Compton, made by Dr. Lawrence C. Freeman. He has left a legacy of excellence worthy of recognition. Dr. Freeman was progressive, dynamic, and invaluable to Willowbrook Junior High. He took a school with failing standardized test scores to levels of proficiency never before attained. He took a school with an enrollment of 600 students to an all-time high of 1,800. He was able to energize students and staff alike, forming a powerful partnership with parents as well. There was always a waiting list to get into Willowbrook. His no-nonsense approach to education shaped the face of generations of urban students, from Centennial High School, Ralph J. Bunche Jr. High School, and Willowbrook Jr. High School. He has been, and continues to be, an inspiration to thousands of former students, and countless former colleagues. His passion for education and unwavering belief in the possibilities a strong education provides, motivated countless students who otherwise would not have realized the promise he saw in each and every one of them. Under his outstanding leadership, the Willowbrook faculty prepared students to compete and excel in a competitive world. During one of his many thought provoking principal messages, Dr. Freeman stated "It can never be business as usual at Willowbrook. We as educators and parents cannot allow ourselves to become stagnated or apathetic in our thoughts as we prepare our young people for the many challenges ahead. With the seemingly perpetual presence of certain societal forces such as unemployment, inflation and crime, none of the role groups in education can afford to possess a lukewarm or pessimistic attitude about education or the process of becoming educated. This resurgence in our commitment to education is at, and must remain at Willowbrook Junior High School." On March 2nd, 2013, a reunion was hosted by former students, teachers, and staff members expressing their love and gratitude for this outstanding man. A wide array of students spoke from their hearts about the positive, transformative influence Dr. Freeman provided. Can you name another principal held in such high esteem, especially 29 years after he left the school? In the words of lifelong advocate for disadvantaged Americans and activist for the rights of children, Marian Wright Edelman “If you don’t like the way the world is, you change it. You have an obligation to change it. You just do it one step at a time.” Dr. Lawrence C. Freeman is the living, breathing embodiment of these powerful sentiments. Therefore, while he is still living and breathing, we are respectfully requesting the renaming of Willowbrook Middle School as Dr. Lawrence C. Freeman Middle School. This will truly be an honor befitting this iconic and deeply loved Champion of Education for Compton. We sincerely thank you in advance for signing this petition.