Here’s how you can give input on the names for Spokane’s new middle schools

Spokane Public Schools

SPOKANE, Wash. — After going through hundreds of suggestions in February, Spokane Public Schools has chosen the finalists of what they will name their three new middle schools and new facility for On Track Academy.

A screening committee chose three names as finalists for each school and will be presented to the School Board at their April 28 meeting. A public hearing will be held on May 12 to collect input on on the names, and the final names will be selected on May 26.

The finalists of each school are as follow:

Northeast Middle School:

  • Beacon Pines, named after Beacon Hill
  • Denny Yasuhara, honoring civil rights activist and Logan Elementary/Garry Middle School teacher
  • Frances Scott, honoring teacher, Spokane Education Association president, WSU Board of Regents member and Spokane’s first African American female attorney

Northwest Middle School:

  • Breckenridge, honoring SPS’s first educator of color Eugene Breckenridge
  • Pauline Flett , honoring Spokane Tribe elder and EWU teacher who wrote the first Spokane-English dictionary
  • Ruth Bader Ginsburg, honoring U.S. Supreme Court justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg

South Middle School:

  • Carla Peperzak, honoring Dutch Resistance operative and WW2 Holocaust freedom fighter Carla Peperzak, who moved to Spokane in 2004
  • John Oakley, honoring South Hill-area teacher John Oakley who taught even after being diagnosed with ALS
  • York, named after the lone African American on the Lewis & Clark expedition; meant to compliment Sacajawea Middle School and Lewis & Clark High School

On Track Academy building: 

  • On Track Academy, the current name of On Track Academy
  • Pacific NW Learning Academy, meant to signify inclusivity and that all in the region are welcome
  • Way’sl’axt, Salish for “hello, friend”

More about the process of naming a school or mascot can be found on SPS’s website.