Alumni Group Sues Over San Francisco School Board Decision to Cover Controversial Mural

The 1936-era fresco, "Life of Washington" mural is seen at George Washington High School in San Francisco on Jun 26, 2019. (Credit: Amy Anderson via CNN)

The 1936-era fresco, "Life of Washington" is seen at George Washington High School in San Francisco on Jun 26, 2019. (Credit: Amy Anderson via CNN)

An alumni group has sued to challenge the San Francisco school board’s decision to cover a controversial mural displayed in a public high school that some criticized as racist.

The San Francisco Unified School District Board of Education in August voted 4-3 to place panels over the “Life of Washington” mural.

The artwork was created in 1936 and depicts the life of George Washington. It shows slaves working at Washington’s estate and pioneers standing over the dead body of a Native American. Activists said the mural at George Washington High was offensive for its depiction of Native Americans and African Americans.

KPIX-TV reports the school’s alumni association filed a lawsuit Friday asking that the board rescind its vote to remove the mural from public view and conduct an environmental review. The board didn’t immediately respond to the filing.

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