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John Muir High School, 1969

In 1969, students boycotted high schools across Pasadena to protest the lack of representation and recognition of minority students.

“The walkout was about equity and fairness. It was a protest against injustice. It’s not fair when the best don’t have an opportunity to shine. It wasn’t just about Song Girls or cheerleaders. If you ran for class president, and everybody knew you were the best and they bypassed you for a White person, that could be a reason for a walkout. If you should have been Valedictorian because you were the best, and they picked somebody else over you who was White, that could result in a walkout. We were protesting discrimination.”

-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 Pasadena High School [1969 yearbook]; Starla Lewis.