SAN BERNARDINO, CA- The San Bernardino County Board of Education voted to name its newest facility after the first African American teacher in San Bernardino County, Dorothy Inghram, during its meeting on September 5.
The board, which voted unanimously (5-0) for the naming, officially will call the new site the San Bernardino County Board of Education Dorothy Inghram Learning Center. The new building is located at 670 E. Carnegie Drive in San Bernardino.
“(Dorothy) was the Harriet Tubman of education for African American students in San Bernardino County,” said Sherman Garnett, president of the County Board. “This is true history right here.”
Inghram, who was born and raised in San Bernardino, graduated from San Bernardino High School in 1923. She graduated from San Bernardino Valley College in 1932 and wrote the school’s alma mater. In 1942, she was hired to teacher second grade at the Mill School, the first African American teacher in the county.
In 1945, she became a teaching principal at the Mill School, becoming the full-time principal in 1951. In 1953, she became the superintendent of the Mill School District, the first African-American in California to be a district superintendent. She lived to be 106 years old before passing away in 2012.
The new facility will serve as an administrative site for Regional Occupational Program and East Valley Special Education Local Plan Area (SELPA) staff, a cybersecurity career technical education training center, house regular County Board of Education meetings and provide conference rooms for educational leadership workshops and events.
The board considered 45 names for the new facility before ultimately choosing the name honoring Inghram.