I know many of you have been following the process over the last several months as we name our new school opening this fall. We are always told to engage the community, so we did when it came to naming the school at the corner of Lipra Avenue and Loof Lane. And today we are excited to see that we have come to the conclusion of this process.
We began this process last fall. While many school districts name schools after local individuals of historical significance or a name that reflects the local geography we wanted to give our new school a current and relevant name – the kind that truly spoke to the community. With all the talk about school relevance we thought we should start with the name. We were excited to see how San Diego was choosing its name for its new MLS franchise by asking the internet (click on the link – it is a good read) – and we decided to do the same thing. As we have embraced technology we have learned when you ask the internet a question, it always give you the best answer. Initially we had over 100 submissions and then moved to the final 4 for the decision. The Internet is always right.
Based on the votes, the final 4 were:
Pamela Anderson Ethical Treatment of Animals Elementary – We assume that the community’s commitment to social initiatives led to this choice. There was also a lot of interest in a young lifeguarding specialty academy which seemed a good fit for this school. It appeared to be an early favourite with Ms. Anderson’s roots in British Columbia, but concerns were raised around potential risque nicknames and logos attached to this school which did seem to cost it some support.
Mr. Dressup Traditional Values Elementary – This had a lot of sentimental support from parents that grew up with the show. The vision of the school was that each day the entire school would watch the antics of Casey and Finnegan to start their day and that would set the tone for the rest of the day. Like how some schools watch a news broadcast, the 4,000 iconic Dressup episodes featuring Ernie Coombes would be shown in sequence, so a ten year cycle of shows.
Justin Bieber Elementary School of Music– A school with a music focus made a lot of sense, so it was not surprising to see this as one of the finalists. The supporters had already labeled the school’s teams the Bieber Beliebers. Again the strong Canadian roots to this name were seen as a real positive.
Donald J. Trump Elementary School of Winning – This was the most surprising of the finalists. The school’s vision was to be focused on winning, so much winning that those attending the school would be tired of winning so much. While many had thought that a school named for a politician would more logically choose a Canadian like Justin Trudeau or Stephen Harper Elementary, Trump Elementary seemed to be riding the wave of public attention. Some clearly felt the Trump name would be like having an IB designation – everyone would know what it meant.
Our New School
We are excited to be opening up Donald J. Trump Elementary School of Winning this fall. In the end Trump Elementary received 46.1% of the vote – which is truly a massive majority of the votes. If you get 46.1% of the vote, it is hard to say you didn’t get anything but an incredible majority in an election. Through this process, we also learned a lot about our community. In reviewing the list of those who voted, we learned that the majority of the Trump Elementary votes came from our Russian community. We actually didn’t know we had a Russian community before this.
So now the iconic Trump brand, will now be on our elementary school. With the excellent reputation of Trump University, clearly Trump has already made its name in education. Beyond its focus on winning, it makes sense to also focus on literacy. We can envision Mr. Trump’s recent quote about what he was reading to be the kind of quote that would inspire our students:
Well, you know, I love to read. Actually, I’m looking at a book, I’m reading a book, I’m trying to get started. Every time I do about a half a page, I get a phone call that there’s some emergency, this or that. But we’re going to see the home of Andrew Jackson today in Tennessee and I’m reading a book on Andrew Jackson. I love to read. I don’t get to read very much, Tucker, because I’m working very hard on lots of different things, including getting costs down. The costs of our country are out of control. But we have a lot of great things happening, we have a lot of tremendous things happening.—Donald Trump to Fox News’ Tucker Carlson, March 15, 2017
And we know it will be a bigly popular school, the kind of school that needs a selection process – we anticipate some extreme vetting in how we choose our students.
We are not naive. We know that a decision like this today, of all days, may surprise some in the community. We know, the people are always right. And this does carry-on our annual tradition of using this day to make bold decisions!
In 2012 I launched my FLOG.
In 2013 I made the announcement of Quadrennial Round Schooling.
In 2014 we formalized our System of Student Power Rankings.
In 2015 we created our Rock, Paper, Scissors Academy.
In 2016 we introduced the Drone Homework Delivery System.
And today we announce our plans to open up Donald J. Trump Elementary School of Winning.
Hopefully you are enjoying today as much as me!