John Jay Wolves!
We are excited to announce our new mascot – The Wolves!
Wolves have a strong community connection and will be a proud symbol for our students and our schools!
Did you know ...
Wolves are complex, highly intelligent animals who are caring, playful, and above all devoted to family. Learn more.
Wolves are a keystone species. Keystone species play a unique and crucial role in the way an ecosystem functions. Without keystone species, the ecosystem, in which they live, would be dramatically different or cease to exist. Read on.
What happened to the Wolfpack? Let us explain.
Wolves and Wolfpack were overwhelmingly the top suggestions to our selection committee when the community was first surveyed. When the committee later narrowed the choices, Wolfpack was selected for its connotation of teamwork and because there is one school in Yonkers (not a school we compete against) that uses wolves as its mascot.
Wolfpack handily won the recent vote.
As the vote was occurring, however, concerns were raised due to the use of the word wolfpack in connection with the Central Park Five case. In 1989, the word was used by the media and others in ways that dehumanized the group of boys who were falsely accused and wrongfully convicted. In light of the renewed focus on racial justice taking root across the country, we felt it important to pause and learn more – to consider whether a word used to demean in one context can remain free of that negative association in another context.
In addition, we’ve learned more recently how protective North Carolina State University is of its trademarked logo “Wolfpack.”
During the pause, we’ve taken time to speak further to colleagues and community members. We’ve connected with people who study and teach issues of race, culture, and equity. Not wanting to rely solely on the thoughts of individuals, we’ve also reached out to representatives of organizations such as the NAACP.
Go John Jay Wolves!
In light of the feedback we’ve received, we believe the best decision is to select Wolves as our new mascot.
We feel this honors the work done by our selection committee and the input received from many in our community (both when it was initially solicited and more recently).
KLSD is deeply committed to teaching about issues of racial justice and justice for all
We remain deeply committed to the significant challenges before us – how to re-open schools safely and effectively in the fall and how to teach deeply and effectively about issues of racial justice and justice for all.
For now, for our community, we think it’s important to move forward regarding the mascot and to start the next school year with our new mascot in place.
Go John Jay Wolves!
Andrew Selesnick, Superintendent of Schools and Christian McCarthy, Director of Health, Athletics, Physical Education, and Wellness, on behalf of the Mascot Selection Committee