Gilbert parents who are not happy with the name of the town’s fifth high school — Campo Verde High — are trying to undo the selection made a week ago.
Among the critics is parent Sabrina Langford, who will have three children attend the new high school. She dubbed the new name “awful” and added it “has nothing to do with this area.”
Dozens of parents have e-mailed the Gilbert school board and the superintendent asking that the board reconsider. They also want to have a say in the name, since many said they didn’t know the school board was going to decide on a name at last Tuesday’s school board meeting and therefore did not attend.
Helen Hollands, president of the school board, said she has received about 50 emails from parents who don’t like the name. She said she hasn’t heard anything positive about the name.
“I can’t disregard this,” Hollands said. “I’m not sure what steps we’ll take.”
Parent Stacey Gin, a Parent Teacher Student Organization president at nearby Quartz Hill Elementary, sees the name as a logistical nightmare, since the name is so close to Camp Verde High in Camp Verde.
Parent Jennifer Edmondson, who will have two children attend the new school, said the high school name should follow the naming of the other district high schools, which have the same name of the nearby junior high. Therefore the name should be South Valley High.
Holland said she might ask the board to reconsider the name at the Nov. 4 school board meeting. However, she also wants to get community input. It depends on what other board members want, she said.
The board discussed about 12 high school names last week, and ultimately decided on the name suggested by board member Elaine Morrison.
Morrison said Monday she reached back in the history of the school district to pick the name, which is a Spanish version of a name suggested 20 years ago for one of the school’s oldest elementary schools, Greenfield Elementary.
Superintendent Dave Allison said Monday the board traditionally picks a name for the school. A principal, who will be chosen for the high school in December, will then put together a parent and student group to choose a school mascot and the school colors.
“They have every right to disagree with the naming of the school,” Allison said. “I don’t mind the name, but maybe I’m coming at it from a different point of view.”
Allison said that since the early 1900s the field in that area has always been an alfalfa field, or a green field.
Edmondson said her daughter is begging her not to send her to the new high school because of the name. She said without parental and student support of a school, there could be “unintended consequences.”
“This could lead to funding issues and impacts to athletics program because it’s an unpopular school,” Edmondson said. “We want a school that they will be proud of.
“Campo Verde is ridiculous,” she said. “I’m not sure what they’re thinking there.”
The new high school is under construction at 1300 E. Germann Road in Gilbert and is scheduled to open in the fall.