Sketch of Lewiston’s new elementary school, which should get a name in April.

LEWISTON — Pretty soon, people can stop calling the city’s new elementary school “the new school.”

A name is expected to be decided in the coming weeks, said School Committee Chairwoman Linda Scott, who has assembled a school naming committee.

She expects the committee to come up with a recommendation this week or next. The committee meets Thursday.

When the committee decides on a recommendation, it will go to the School Committee for a vote, Scott said Tuesday.

“I don’t want to rush it, but I’d like to have a recommendation as soon as possible,” she said. “I’d like to have the name prepared for the groundbreaking, which could be in mid-May.”

The naming committee has seven members, including representatives from Longley and Martel elementary schools and the community.

Some school districts have policies on how schools are to named, but Lewiston does not, Scott said, so the committee is using criteria commonly used when naming a school.

One is if a school is named after a person, that person must be deceased. There are cases of a school or institution being named for a distinguished person who was still alive, then that person got in some kind of legal trouble or scandal.

Other considerations are naming a school for a place, the street or avenue it is on. Or it could be named after the school’s vision or theme.

Scott said she’s received some feedback from the community on the school’s name.

One idea is to name wings or hallways after the two schools that will be merged, Longley and Martel, to form the new school, to keep those names alive.

The $49.7 million school, will which be paid for by the state, was approved by voters June 14. It will be built on the high school football field. The state will build new athletic fields and community walking paths as part of the project.

The school will have a capacity of 880 students, about 100 more than Montello Elementary School.

The school is needed to help relieve crowding. It will house students from Martel and Longley elementary schools, plus take another 100 students from other schools.

It is expected to open in the fall of 2019.


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