OSSIAN, Ind. (WANE) – The Northern Wells Community School District will soon have a new name and official colors following the school board approving part of a district-wide rebranding plan Tuesday night.

The Northern Wells Community School Board voted to rename the district as Norwell Community School district, and brand all schools with the colors Navy and Gold. The Board voted against using the Knight mascot for all schools. This keeps Lancaster Central and Ossian Elementary School’s mascots the same.

During public comment at the beginning of the meeting, some residents told the board they did not want the changes. Michelle Bowman, Wells County Resident, said that after the vote she had mixed feelings.

“I am glad that we did, were able to maintain having our own mascots for the elementary schools. I would prefer to keep the colors also, but I guess you know there’s a trade off,” Bowman said.

Mike Springer, superintendent of Northern Wells Community Schools, said he believes there was a good compromise with the board’s decision.

“It took two or three things that we can make more common, but yet still celebrating that heritage that we have,” Springer said.

Bowman said overall, she wishes the community would have been more included.

“We just think that there could be more openness, you know, between the school board and the community when things like this come up, when they’re making a major change,” Bowman said.

Superintendent Springer said this was not something that they were pushing for. They just knew that branding and messaging was needed.

“We’re trying to think in terms of, you know, growing as a district, growing in our programming and thinking about what’s next. And so that’s really going to be the messaging moving forward. How exactly that plays out, you know, we still need to work on that,” Springer said.

Raina Sisson, director of Food and Nutrition at Northern Wells Community Schools, said she believes the new changes will benefit her department.

“I think it’s really important to have a consistent brand across your district. It was a challenge when I decided to brand because we didn’t have consistent colors across the district, or a consistent logo or mascot,” Sisson said, “Our kids need their visual. And I think it’s really important that they know that when they come into a cafeteria or serving line that it speaks to them.”

Superintendent Springer said the change will not happen overnight and will be a gradual process.