On Tuesday, the Wichita Falls ISD board of trustees said the mascot naming for its two new high schools – Legacy and Memorial – would be left to the students.
After a lot of contention from the community, the board decided to move forward with the idea of allowing the schools’ mascots to be voted on by its students.
Legacy, which will be the ninth between UIL and TAPPS schools, has the choices of leopards, lions and falcons. By our count, there are already eight schools with leopards, 77 with lions and 29 with falcons. The early odds-on favorite would probably be leopards to keep the Legacy Leopards (LL) motif and be a bit more unique than the others. In some historical context, Wichita Falls ISD had a Booker T. Washington High School that was torn down after a federal mandate forced its closure in 1969. That school was called the Leopards.
Memorial, which will become the 15th in the state with that moniker, is left to mavericks or titans. Our count has 12 mavericks and nine titans, but like Legacy, it could be expected that Memorial sticks with the alliteration.
A Little Back Story
Wichita Falls High School will be closed due to the condition of the building and the associated cost of keeping it up to date. It was determined that building two schools instead of retrofitting the older schools would be better and a cheaper option.
As for Rider and Hirschi, those schools will turn into middle schools with a few million dollars each to renovate.
The five mascots – three for Legacy, two for Memorial – were provided to the naming committee on December 7.
The new schools are under construction and will have the same floor plans with the capacity to hold 1,900 students.
Legacy and Memorial are slated to open in 2024 with WF High School closing in 2025, according to the WFISD board’s long-term plan.
When the remaining two high schools transition into middle schools, the mascot count will lose coyotes, huskies and raiders.