Wood Dale Junior High Parents, Students Vote Down Name Change

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Byline: Christy Gutowski Daily Herald Staff Writer

Wood Dale Junior High School's name will stay the same.

District 7 officials recently decided to keep the moniker as is after polling students, parents and teachers.

The school system late last year formed a panel to study the idea of renaming the school "Wood Dale Middle School" to reflect the model upon which the students' education is based.

An overwhelming majority - some 80 percent - of those surveyed urged the board against the switch. And an even larger percentage of the 400 students polled said the "junior high" term sounded more mature.

"I think they perceive the junior high name to make them sound like they're bigger," Principal Larry Hartwig said.

Parents and educators argued that 10 years from now the middle school concept could be replaced by another educational model. As they see it, why mess with tradition.

"Schools are constantly struggling to improve," Superintendent Michael Smoot said, "and sometimes the more you change things, the more they circle around and come back to the way they were. …