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National law firm chosen for civil rights probe at VMI

The Virginia Military Institute is being investigated after reports were made of structural racism at the college.
Credit: AP
Crews prepare to remove a statue of Confederate Gen. Thomas "Stonewall" Jackson from the campus of the Virginia Military Institute on Monday, Dec. 7, 2020, in Lexington, Va. (AP Photo/Sarah Rankin)

LEXINGTON, Va. — Virginia's coordinating body for higher education has chosen a national law firm to investigate the Virginia Military Institute. 

The State Council of Higher Education for Virginia posted a notice of intent Tuesday to contract Barnes & Thornburg. 

The probe was ordered in October after The Washington Post published a story that described Black cadets and alumni facing "relentless racism" at the school. 

The Roanoke Times reports that the notice is not a binding contract between the state and the firm. But a council official says the contract will be awarded at the end of the 10-day notice period.