Bedford Road Collegiate

Bedford Road Collegiate's new team name is Redhawks. It replaces the controversial Redmen name. (Courtesy of Saskatoon Public Schools)

Students at Saskatoon's Bedford Road Collegiate will now be shouting "Go Redhawks"

redmen

Bedford Road's old logo. (Bedford Road Collegiate)

After years of debate, the school dropped the controversial Redmen name and logo in March. The new name and logo was unveiled at a pep rally this morning. 

Community groups have lobbied Saskatoon Public Schools' board members for years to change the west-side high school's name and logo, calling them racist.

Incoming student union co-president Hailey Lavallee says she likes the new name.

"It still holds a lot of meaning with the (phrase) red," she said. "Redhawks still carries a lot of meaning from the past, and it's only going to bring it into the future and have a new beginning for all of us."

Bedford Road started using the Redmen name in 1923. According to the school, it was originally chosen to reflect the colour of the team's uniforms. The logo of a First Nations man was added in the 1960s.

Current student union co-president Jaycie Schoffer says the naming controversy was hard on the school. However, she thinks the new name should work.

"Coming into the final process, it was hard, because my family have all graduated from here," she said. "Just knowing that it's finally over, we're the last graduating class--it was hard, but it was a positive move forward."

Principal Cody Hanke says the name makes sense for the team.

"Obviously the Red Tail Hawk is where we got the genesis for this idea," he said. "Certainly, it has connections to the prairies as well, students can go to the edge of the city to see a red tail hawk."

The school board passed a motion calling on Bedford Road to drop the name in March. A group of 70 staff, students and alumni have met several times to discuss what the high school's new name and logo should be. 

The school hosted a garage sale in its auditorium on Saturday morning to sell off thousands of pieces of the now-retired Redmen memorabilia.

Bedford Road

Students assembly at Saskatoon's Bedford Road Collegiate to unveil new name of sports team. (David Shield/CBC)

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