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Record Number: 13380
Displayed from: Dec 17, 2015 , until: Feb 17, 2016

Q. What is the new North Side High School nickname? A. Legends

Q. Who selected the name? A. Students, staff and alumni were offered an opportunity to suggest new nicknames. About 75 names were submitted, and a committee of students, staff, alumni, parents, a member of the Board of School Trustees, and representatives from North Side’s feeder schools, narrowed down the suggestions. Any names that were inappropriate or already used by nearby schools or schools that North Side frequently plays in athletics were eliminated. The other names were considered one by one. In the end, eight names were considered by students – Falcons, Legends, Mustangs, Nations, Night Hawks, Raptors, Rockets and Thunder. After the first vote, the options were narrowed down to four – Falcons, Legends, Night Hawks and Raptors – with Legends coming out ahead.

Q. Why did the nickname need to change? A. The process to select a new nickname began in late summer when members of the Board of School Trustees asked North Side and district leaders to examine retiring the use of Redskins, which has been in place since the school opened in 1927. At that time, the name was chosen as a source of pride in the area’s rich Native American history. But the name is now perceived as a derogatory term and is inconsistent with the district’s core values, which includes valuing “the diversity and uniqueness of our district and community.”

Q. How was this explained to students? A. At the start of the school year, North Side staff and students learned about the traditions and history of Native Americans in the area, particularly related to the Miami Tribe, to gain a better understanding of why the nickname is offensive to many people.

Q. Why weren’t alumni allowed to vote on the new name? A. Alumni had their years in high school, and they were Redskins. This change affects students going forward, so they were allowed to choose.

Q. Can I still wear my Redskins shirt to school? A. Yes.

Q. When does the change take place? A. Beginning with the 2016-17 school year.

Q. Do alumni have to adopt the new nickname? A. No, they graduated as Redskins.

Q. Can the alumni adopt the new nickname? A. Yes, any North Side graduate can be a Legend.

Q. What will the new logo/mascot look like? A. The committee will determine the process by which a new logo/mascot will be designed and selected. Stay tuned for more information.

Q. What is a Legend? A. A Legend is someone who is very well known. We have had many alumni in our nearly 90-year history who many would consider legends – mayors, actors and actresses, musicians, business owners and more.

Q. How much will it cost to remove all the Redskin references and logos from North Side? A. Even though the logo appears in several places, we do not plan on spending much, if anything, on removing the image. Where it can easily be painted over during routine summer maintenance, it will be covered. Other places, such as the stained glass window and terrazzo flooring, are not so easily removed. There is no plan to remove those images at this time. If they need to be replaced as some point in the future, we will consider removing them at that point.

Q. How much will it cost to replace all the uniforms? A. Uniform purchases are on a 3-year rotation with a portion of uniforms purchased each year. That cycle will continue with new uniforms depicting the new nickname and logo.

Q. Are the school colors changing? A. No, they will remain red and white.

Q. Will the school song change? A. No.


With nearly 30,000 students, Fort Wayne Community Schools is one of the largest school districts in Indiana. FWCS proudly allows families to choose any of its 50 schools through its successful school-choice program creating diversity in each school, including some with more than 75 languages spoken. FWCS offers seven magnet schools focusing on areas such as science and math, communication, fine arts or Montessori at the elementary and middle school level. In high school, students can choose from the prestigious International Baccalaureate program, Project Lead the Way or New Tech Academy as well as other rigorous academic and specialty training programs.