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Muir High School Flag Girls, 1968

In the spring of 1969, students boycotted classes across Pasadena to protest discrimination in the selection of Song Girls cheerleaders at Pasadena High School. This was an instance of unfair treatment that highlighted more widespread inequality across the schools. Starla Lewis was a Flag Girl cheerleader at John Muir High School the year before the protests.

“When I went to tryouts for Flag Girls, all the black girls looked at each other to see which one of us would be the token black. In the history of the school there was never more than one black Flag Girl chosen at a time. The year that I was chosen, John Muir High made history by choosing two black girls in the same year, as a sign that times were changing."

-Starla Lewis, Professor Emeritus, Black Studies, San Diego Mesa College, John Muir High School Class of 1968

©2018 Deborah Aschheim. This project is made possible in part by the Pasadena Arts & Culture Commission and the City of Pasadena Cultural Affairs Division. Courtesy John Muir High School [1968 yearbook]; Starla Lewis.