Hays High School will become the hawks beginning with the 2021-2022 school year.
Current 9th through 11th graders, who will attend the school next year, as well as middle school students in the Hays High School feeder pattern, made nominations and then voted on their mascot choice earlier in the month.
The top five nomination choices that made the final selection ballot included: hawks, raptors, honey badgers, dragons, and hornets. A total of 1,453 students voted.
Hawks received the most votes – 461. Raptors came in second place with 376 votes. The remaining votes went to: dragons (267), honey badgers (191), and hornets (157). One student voted but chose not to answer.
The next step in the mascot change process will be to engage the services of the district’s graphics design and branding partners.
School colors will remain red and blue. Following the selection of a logo and branding package, the school will be able to order new student uniforms and begin to change signage around the building.
The full timeline for the change is online at www.hayscisd.net/mascot.
The fiscal impact of the mascot change on a single budget year has been estimated to be as high as $800,000.
However, the district hopes to complete the transition below that amount. The bulk of the expenses involve band and athletic uniforms, which are replaced regularly on staggered schedules to spread out the costs over multiple budget years.
The district will incur the entire uniform replacement costs in a single budget year for the upcoming school year, but work to return to a staggered uniform replacement schedule over time.
Other larger, one-time expenses will include replacing the school’s gym floor logos, equipment vehicles, and the front entrance marquee. The funding will come from the district’s operating budget or fund balance.
The Hays CISD Board of Trustees voted unanimously in July 2020 to retire the rebel mascot for Hays High School.
Students who do not wish to wear uniforms with “rebels” on them have not been required to do so and will not be required to do so for the remainder of the school year.
For the new mascot, students were not allowed to nominate mascots that were in use by current district middle or high schools, because those campuses have competition fine arts and athletic teams.
Hays CISD’s Hemphill Elementary uses the “hawks” as its mascot. But, since the elementary school does not feed into Hays High School, the district anticipates no conflict. Hemphill will remain the “hawks.”