Maine Elementary School Celebrates New Mascot

Youngsters voted to replace their old mascot the black bear with the chickadee


Students at a Maine elementary school are celebrating getting a new mascot.

Normally, it wouldn't be a big to-do but in this case, the change, which students in Brunswick voted on was overridden by the school board.

Youngsters at the Coffin Elementary School voted to replace their old mascot, the black bear, with the chickadee to coincide with the move into a new building and new name: Kate Furbish Elementary School.

"Student's voices have been heard with overwhelming majority," said Tyler Patterson, a senior at Brunswick High School and school board student liaison at a Jan. 8 meeting.

After Patterson made that announcement, another school board member raised a concern the chickadee mascot would be inconsistent with other schools.

"I would still prefer we went with the dragonfly," the school board member said. "I understand they voted…"

For parents like Jeremy Lavway, the news was upsetting. Not simply because his son's enthusiasm for the chickadee had turned into a mood "as upset as a six-year-old can get."

For Lavway, the initial dismissal by the school board seemed harsh.

"That was a bad look," he recalled. "They said that's not what they meant but it looked bad on tape."

Dozens of parents and kids put pressure on the school board, prompting an emergency meeting on Thursday night during which another vote was had.

This time, the board sided with the kids and apologized for not realizing how seriously the mascot election, which included a primary to narrow choices down, was.

"They did the right thing," Lavway said. "It's a school mascot but it is upsetting."

NECN did reach out to Brunswick's school superintendent for a comment but was told he was unavailable to comment. Multiple school board members who were contacted did not immediately respond to requests for comments.

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