Naming panel doesn't support public's top pick: for Robert Maxwell
(Update: Adding video, principal's comments)
BEND, Ore. (KTVZ) -- A Bend-La Pine Schools naming committee has recommended three options for the new high school under construction in southeast Bend: Caldera, Woodlands or Vista High School, in that order.
The new school's principal, Chris Boyd, and naming committee members announced the choices at Tuesday night's school board meeting.
The school board is scheduled to make the decision at its March 10 meeting, but doesn't have to go with one of the ranked recommendations, district spokeswoman Alandra Johnson said Wednesday.
"The ultimate choice is up to the school board," Johnson said.
The naming committee had established four criteria for its selections: names that transcend the variety of cultures that will make up the student body, reflects in a unique manner the south/southeast Bend area, conveys pride for the area and evokes emotion.
Caledera refers to the Newberry National Volcanic Monument and the geologic past and present of the area, the committee said.
Woodlands, the committee noted, refers to an area of transition between ecosystems or transition zones, such as the area between the forest and the desert.
Vista, a word that has the same meaning in English and Spanish, means a far-reaching view. "From various vantage points on the new HS site, the vistas are stunning," a slide presentation to the board noted.
"Names are ways in which we identify and build schema and culture around things, so a name is really important," Boyd said Wednesday. "And our committee spent a lot of time talking about how do we pick a name that helps unify an attendance area, that helps build school pride, that is inclusive and welcoming."
In an online community survey, the overwhelming top choice was to name the school for former Bend educator Robert Maxwell, who was the nation's oldest living Medal of Honor recipient when he passed away last year.
But Johnson noted the committee decided not to name the school for a person, something the school district hasn't done for several years. A school board policy also says the person for whom a school is named should have passed away at least five years prior.
Whatever name is chosen, the new school's colors have been set, Boyd revealed. The main color will be burnt orange, similar to that of the Texas Longhorns, along with a complimentary dark navy blue.
"And that color selection came from not just student input, but it also came from talking to our architects and designers and thinking about how school colors show up on things like bleachers or in hallways," Boyd said.
"We need to have the mascot, school colors and a name in order to think about how those are implemented within gym floors, on bleachers and stadiums," he added.
The new high school at the corner of Southeast 15th Street and Knott Road is expected to open in the fall of next year.