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The Telegram
  • Ilion-Mohawk students pick Central Valley Academy

  • Ilion and Mohawk students went to the polls Wednesday to choose a name for the new merged district and Central Valley Academy was the winner.

    Students in grades 4-11 chose from among three names presented by the School Identity Transition Advisory Team.

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  • Ilion and Mohawk students went to the polls Wednesday to choose a name for the new merged district and Central Valley Academy was the winner.
    Students in grades 4-11 chose from among three names presented by the School Identity Transition Advisory Team.
    The team, made up of students, parents and school staff, had met over the last few weeks and brainstormed possible names for the new district. They narrowed the list to three choices on which students voted: Central Valley Academy, Mohawk Valley Academy and Ilion-Mohawk Central School.
    District officials submitted the winning name, Central Valley Academy, to the state Department of Education for approval on Thursday morning.
    SED representatives responded saying only school districts with a single building could use the word “academy” as part of their official district name. The state officials said they would approve the name Central Valley Central School District. However, the high school could be called Central Valley Academy, which could also be the common name of the district.
    “It is important that we adopt a district name as quickly as possible,” said Superintendent Cosimo Tangorra in a news release. “That name will be the foundation of our identity. We need a name before we can move forward with our website and email addresses, our newsletters and stationary, our signs, etc.”
    The next step will be to choose a mascot and school colors. The transition team will meet again Monday to continue discussions on these decisions.
    The team has been working with Hal Hefner, a former Mohawk resident and now a graphic artist in Los Angeles, to explore various color schemes and mascots. The group will weigh the various options and then submit them to the student body in grades 4-11 for a vote.
    “Adults are present, but their role is to make certain the choices are tasteful and practical. The ultimate decisions rest with the students,” said Tangorra.
    Ilion and Mohawk voters went to the polls in February and approved a proposal to merge the two districts. The merger study had begun with the Ilion and Mohawk school districts. Herkimer and Frankfort-Schuyler also joined to make it a four-school study, but Frankfort-Schuyler voters rejected the plan in a straw vote and Herkimer voters turned it down in a binding vote for a three-school merger last fall.
    Since the merger vote in February, a seven-member board of education has been chosen. The board recently adopted a budget for the 2013 - 2014 school year and hired Tangorra as the superintendent for the new district.
    Transition teams were named to focus on a variety of issues that will need to be addressed as preparations continue for the new school district to begin its first school year.
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