The School Committee selected Watertown High School’s new mascot, or logo: a shield with a large W and Raiders written across it.
The Committee unanimously chose the shield from the four concepts brought forward by the Watertown High School Mascot Screening Committee in October. Other ideas were a knight on a horse, a knight behind a shield and a knight’s helmet.
Town Council President Mark Sideris proposed that the shield be the choice.
“We’re not going to make everybody happy tonight, so we have to make the decision that is best for the Watertown Schools,” Sideris said. “I think this represents Watertown, it represents the Raiders and it does it in a respectable fashion.”
Sideris noted that the feedback from the survey sent out to the community – in which 191 people participated – had some negative views of the four proposals. In comments on this website and other forums, some alumni and others have been upset that the school will not keep the Indian logo or something depicting a Native American
“I can get behind this and I do think that the community, once this gets out there, it will catch on just like our old logo did,” Sideris said. “As long as we keep promoting this I think this is one of the best options.”
School Committee member Liz Yusem said she liked the shield for its powerful form and simplicity. She also liked the idea of linking awards to the new logo.
“The fact that a student came up with the idea of giving out shield awards for various areas, maybe community service, or whatever they’d like,” Yusem said.
She also said she believes it will be good to use as the Watertown Public Schools moves toward rebuilding or renovating the high school as part of the branding of the new school.
School Committee member Eileen Hsu-Balzer said that of all the choices, the shield is the only one that is gender neutral. She added that it is flexible.
“This can apply not just to sports but all the activities that students are engaged in,” Hsu-Balzer said. “Students aren’t necessarily battling, it is about being proud and having their crest.”
She also thought it would works, and can be reproduced well, in both small and large sizes.
One question that arose was the question of a logo vs. a mascot, Foley said.
“First and foremost, we were looking for an image that represents the high school community and reflects who we are,” Foley said. “Something we can be connected to and feel connected.”
Foley said a mascot may grow out of the image chosen by the School Committee. Some mascots are closely related to the team’s mascot, such as the Boston College Eagle, she said, while other times they have little to do with it, such as the Boston Red Sox’s Wally the Green Monster.