POCATELLO — Pocatello High School is moving forward with the selection of a new mascot. The selection process was initiated following a vote to retire the school’s Indian mascot by the Pocatello/Chubbuck School District 25 Board of Trustees on September 15. Submissions were accepted from September 17 through October 16.
A mascot selection committee consisting of alumni, parents, coaches, teachers and community members carefully vetted approximately 185 submissions and narrowed the selections down to nine.
The nine potential mascots are Bison, Thunder, Stampede, Eagles, Falcons, Mountain Lions, Mustangs, Phantoms, and Wolves.
Committee members agreed on a criteria to use in narrowing down the submissions.
1) Can the idea be positively tied to the former PHS Indian mascot in a way that respectfully acknowledges the school’s Native American history?
2) Following much discussion, the committee decided to eliminate any form of people or things connected to a group of people as a possibility.
3) The committee decided animals submissions would need to be native to this area – in keeping with linking to the PHS history.
4) The committee decided to ensure the new mascot is an object rather than just an idea. The committee recognized the importance of imagery and felt the new mascot should have something concrete rather than abstract.
5) The committee considered the possible negative portrayal that could come with any particular mascot.
6) The committee agreed it was important to preserve well-loved mottos and phrases that have been part of the PHS school history without diminishing any positive impact.
Committee members provided input for each submission and the submissions were narrowed down based on the approved criteria. Next, Pocatello High School student government learners were divided into teams and assigned a mascot to promote to help voters envision how each of the mascot options could be implemented.
The committee has created an advisory survey to provide input from PHS’s current student body and staff, as well as alumni and the community at large. The committee will use the survey as a reference in making a final recommendation to the PCSD 25 Board of Trustees for consideration at a work session on Tuesday, November 10 with the potential to take action at the next regular board meeting on Tuesday, November 17. The survey can be found at: https://forms.gle/FX7q47ArrguSZN7F6.