The Loudoun County Board of Supervisors and the Washington Redskins are partnering for a donation of $35,000 to benefit the restoration of the Ashburn Colored School.
"Please tell Mr. Daniel Snyder that just a regular guy, with a regular family and lifelong fan just wants to say thanks for the generous donation to restore the African American Schoolhouse in Ashburn. It touched me to my core. Don't know why and can't really express my feelings into words, but with all [that's] going on in the world today, it's good to know someone still cares about 'people.'" – Tracy Wiggs
The Washington Redskins and Loudoun County are donating funds to benefit the restoration of the Ashburn Colored School after it was recently vandalized.
Redskins owner Dan Snyder and the Washington Redskins Charitable Foundation are donating $35,000 to the restoration project for the Ashburn Colored School, which was defaced with derogatory messages and symbols last month.
"The defacing of this historic African American structure was felt by the entire Loudoun community and came to the attention of the Washington Redskins team leadership," said Board of Supervisors Chair Phyllis J. Randall. "They reached out to my office following the joint news conference and asked what they could do to help; when I learned that the organization planned to support the school, which is located less than two miles from Redskins Park, I was very grateful for their continued community support."
According to a press release from the Loudoun County government, the donation will help the Loudoun School for the Gifted exceed its fundraising goal of $100,000.
"We are extremely appreciative of the generosity of the Redskins," said Loudoun School for the Gifted founder Dr. Deep Sran. "The support we have received from the community in recent weeks has been truly extraordinary and it will help us to achieve our vision for this community resource much, much faster."
The Ashburn Colored School, a single-room schoolhouse, operated from its opening in 1892 until 1957, served African American students from elementary school through high school.
Since 2014, the Loudoun County School for the Gifted has been working on converting the schoolhouse into a museum.
After the horrific events happened on Friday, Sept. 30, when crude and hateful messages were drawn on the schoolhouse, volunteers rallied together to restore the building to its natural state.
Last Sunday, more than 500 people came to the schoolhouse to help bring it back to that look.
Among those in attendance was 82-year-old Yvonne Neal, who attended the school from 1938 until 1945, who recalled some of his favorite members while attending on a daily basis.
During her time as a student, Neal said the school community was like "one big, loving family."
"That schoolhouse was home, and we were happy for it," Neal [recently said](https://static1.squarespace.com/static/55d59e69e4b00ab39608379a/t/569e95b05827c3cdcbf1b632/1453233584855/Memories Of A One-room Schoolhouse - Leesburg Today Online—Daily News Coverage of Loudoun County, Leesburg, Ashburn_ Ashburn.pdf).
The land on which the schoolhouse stands was bought by the Loudoun School for the Gifted in 2015. At first, the renovation product was created to help students engage with the Ashburn community.
The project has since spawned into something much greater.
"I think it's very hard to give students authentic tasks in school, and so when you have an opportunity to give students an authentic task, it's critical that you do so," Dr. Sran said via LoudounSchool.org. "[T]here's a way of learning with an authentic task that cannot be duplicated with a task that is designed just for a specific class... If you think students have something to contribute, then you can't leave all the ideas to the adults in the space."