After hearing from many concerned Watertown residents and WHS alumni, school officials will be seeking input about the high school’s mascot and logo.
The school decided to choose a new logo, and possibly a new nickname to replace the Red Raiders logo, which featured a cartoon-ized American Indian. The school continues to be called the Raiders, but for the past several years the school has not had a logo to put on uniforms, shirts and other items.
Students at the high school have been invited to enter a contest to design a new school logo (see more here). The finalists were supposed to be announced, and voted on this week. On Tuesday, however, Superintendent Jean Fitzgerald and WHS Principal Shirley Lundberg announced that the decision would take more time.
“The Watertown Public Schools has experienced an overwhelming response to Watertown High School’s (WHS) effort to create a mascot for WHS. There is clearly a great deal of support, and pride in, our schools,” the announcement read.
Alumni, students, parents and other community members have commented on all sides of the issue, the announcement said.
“We want a mascot behind which everyone can rally. That is the purpose of a mascot,” the release said. “Watertown has shown itself to be an extraordinary community in its willingness and ability to work together and support each other in some difficult situations. We want to take advantage of that strength, slow the process down a bit, and allow for more dialogue. Even when we disagree, we must come together to work out a solution.”
School officials will seek out opinions from the community, and hold events “in the coming weeks” where people’s voices can be heard.