The mid-1960s were difficult ones in Lovett's history. In 1963, Lovett certainly was not the last stronghold of segregation, but it may well have been one of the most publicized. By 1967, Lovett had become one of the first independent schools in Atlanta to desegregate.
In 1963, Martin Luther King III applied to Lovett and was denied admission by the board of trustees--despite the objections of the governing Episcopal Diocese, which was in favor of open churches and open schools. However, Lovett's trustees argued that they were not in defiance, since the school was not originally founded by the Episcopal Church. As a result, the Reverend McDowell, an Episcopal priest, resigned as headmaster, and the school's admission policy was revised to free itself of ecclesiastical jurisdiction of The Cathedral of St. Philip. By 1967, Lovett's admission policy had been revised to evaluate students without regard to race or religion, and the school became one of the first independent schools in Atlanta to desegregate.The school's nondiscriminatory policy now reads: "The Lovett School admits students of any race, color, gender, religion, sexual orientation, and national or ethnic origin to all the rights, privileges, programs, and activities generally accorded or made available to students at the school. The Lovett School does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, gender, religion, sexual orientation, and national or ethnic origin in administration of its employment practices, educational policies, admissions policies, scholarship and loan programs, and athletic or other school-administered programs."