The Barnesville School of Arts & Sciences has changed its mascot from a Bee to a Bear. The Middle School Student Council initiated the change in an effort to find a mascot that had a broader appeal than a Bee and a stronger presence on the sports fields.
“While the Bee has been a presence at the School for several decades,” said Doug Hart, Student Council Advisor and Middle School Teacher, “it has lost its connection with the middle school students.”
The process of choosing a new mascot began with the Student Council requesting ideas from the student body. The entire student body then voted for their top three choices and the Student Council narrowed the field from there. The Bear, a top choice, appealed to the members of the Student Council for a variety of reasons, the first being diversity.
“Bears come in many different colors, shapes and sizes: brown, white, black, koala, polar, grizzly, panda… This diversity mirrors the diversity of the Barnesville students,” the Student Council explained.
The students also felt the bear mascot offered greater possibilities to connect with all the students, from the Preschoolers to the 8th Graders. “Bear cubs connect well with the lower school buddies since they are cuddly,” the Student Council explained, “while a Bear is fierce, which works well for sports.”
Other reasons for the Bear include:
- Good visuals: paw prints, bear head, and full bear
- Bears have been spotted in Montgomery and Frederick counties
- Many fun bear characters: Winnie the Pooh, Yogi Bear, Smokey the Bear, and Coke Polar Bear
- Bear theme present in Barnesville vernacular already: ‘Smarter than the average bear’ and ‘Bear hugs’
- Bears and honey connect to Bee mascot
The last reason was taken into consideration when designing the new mascot’s look. As a nod to the former mascot, a small bee flies over the bear’s head.
The new mascot comes on the heels of the School’s name change from The Barnesville School to Barnesville School of Arts & Sciences and a new logo, both introduced at the beginning of the 2013-2014 school year.
In conjunction with these changes, “the students thought [a new mascot] would be a fun and playful way to create school spirit,” said Mr. Hart.