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Framingham Public Schools Seeks Community Input as Part of a Logo and Branding Initiative

Framingham Public Schools
Robert A. Tremblay, Ed.D., Superintendent of Schools

Rochelle Santos, Media & Communications Manager
Framingham Public Schools 

For Immediate Release: July 9, 2021

Framingham Public Schools Seeks Community Input as Part of a Logo and Branding Initiative

July 9, 2021 (Framingham, MA) Framingham Public Schools (FPS) is excited to engage the community and is seeking input as part of a logo and branding initiative. This effort supports the City of Framingham in phasing out the old ‘Town of Framingham Seal’, but it also gives the school District a logo, color palette, and fonts to create a consistent and cohesive visual experience for decades to come.

Framingham Public Schools was previously represented with a blue version of the old town seal with surrounding text that read "Town of Framingham School Department".

Original Town Seal with ‘Town of Framingham School Department’ around the outer edge

In 2018 after Framingham became a City, that School Department seal was amended to center the word ‘Framingham’ and eliminate the 'Town of' reference.

Amended Town Seal with ‘Framingham School Department’ around the outer edge

Also in 2018 - 2019, the Framingham Seal Development Committee was formed to create a new city seal that represents the essence of Framingham. This marked Framingham's transition from a town to a city. In the new version of the seal there is a focus on historical elements including a braided straw symbolic of Framingham’s prominence in the straw bonnet and hat industry in the 1800’s; wheel with train tracks as spokes representing the importance of transportation; May Hall which is part of Framingham State University’s campus and represents Framingham’s educational history; and the different milestone years in the town / city’s history.

Original Town Seal and the updated City Seal

While the School District honors and appreciates Framingham’s history, a unique visual identity was sought to reflect the District’s mission, vision, and core values while serving all or any of the following purposes:

  • tie to education and our commitment to supporting the social-emotional health and wellbeing of our students;

  • inspire and encourage passion and experience with extracurricular activities like arts and athletics;

  • reflect the variety of programs and pathways to the future;

  • showcases Framingham Public Schools’ dedication to creating an environment that’s welcoming and accepting of all students, and celebrates each student’s uniqueness and in Framingham, that especially includes appreciating our diversity.

“Framingham Public Schools needs a new visual identity and while timing is always a challenge, once complete this initiative will create opportunities for innovation and modernization that will positively impact the FPS Community,” said Rochelle Santos, Media and Communications Manager for Framingham Public Schools. “A consistent brand identity will provide a visual representation of our mission, vision, and values and will offer that consistency from the moment we welcome a new family to the District, across our web presence, when we recruit new teachers and staff, when we promote District-wide events, and so much more. I’ve discovered both small and large scale Districts that have pursued similar branding efforts. What we’re doing will not only give offices and departments a framework for their visual material, but will also reinforce District culture and pride. As an organization that is shaping the future through education, inclusion, employment and more, a strong visual identity is essential.”

Early Research
Beginning more than two years ago, representatives from different Central Office Departments including the Media and Communications Manager, Human Resources, Office of Equity, and Dr. Tremblay gathered to start planning for this transition. Initial research was done with student groups including high school students and elementary students who participated in Out of School Time programs. The project was put on hold in the heat of the pandemic, but resurfaced as various visual branding needs arose.

Why Now?
The District has identified the top 5 reasons to accelerate this effort:

  • The current District ‘logo’ which utilizes the old town seal is being phased out and needs to be replaced - ideally with something that is unique and community-supported.

  • For the start of the 2021-2022 school year, the District is opening a new Welcome Center. The Framingham Public Schools Parent Information Center (PIC) is shifting from a one-time registration experience to a community hub where families can access a range of support services from our many school and community partners. This expansion presents a need for banners, directional signage, printed collateral, and posters to help guide and welcome FPS families.

  • The District plans to launch an updated website before school starts for the 21-22 school year. An updated logo, color palette, and fonts will guide the process, resulting in a modernized website with improved accessibility. Updated school websites will follow.

  • Woodrow Wilson Elementary School has been renamed Harmony Grove Elementary School and while there won’t be a unique logo immediately to represent the new name, we can utilize the District logo font to help guide an interim branding effort over the summer in advance of the start of the 21-22 school year.

  • Human Resources and the Office of Equity need new, refreshed recruitment material to attract teachers and staff at different events. This is long overdue and would be used throughout the year.

Next Steps and Community Engagement
Two initial logo concepts and a slogan option were presented at the June 23rd School Committee meeting. Since then one of the concepts was eliminated and a new one was brought forward. The District is now inviting all stakeholders including staff, parents, students, community partners, and residents to review the options and associated narrative before sharing their preferences.

The FPS community will receive communication inviting them to share input via a Google Form and students participating in FPS-provided summer programming will be presented with a hands-on opportunity to provide input.

The Concepts

Concept 1

  • This concept offers an abstract and semi-futuristic 'FPS' built into one mark. (see inspiration below)

  • Harmonious and different colors represent diversity.

  • The blank space in the mark is representative of an F.

  • The blank space also reflects pathways offered to students; that our students come here from various places; that many of our families commute to work in different places; and lastly, that people come to Framingham from larger cities for diversity, education, and a sense of community. Additionally, this concept with its T-map inspiration offers a historical tie-in to transportation which has always been an element of the Town, now City Seal. (see inspiration below)

Visual Inspiration

Concept 2

  • This version and its circular shape were inspired by the spoke and wheel / train tracks from the Framingham City Seal.

  • Utilizing the wheel shape and incorporating several 'F's, this represents Framingham being a school district on the move.

  • Being 'on the move' offers a connection to our progressive, forward-thinking, and innovative approach to education and all that we offer our students and families.

  • Harmonious and different colors represent diversity.

  • The dot in the middle represents each individual student surrounded by a safe, inclusive environment.

Visual Inspiration

The Slogan
The District’s Strategic Plan for 2020-2023 was a full-community effort with input from District and school leaders, staff, parents, students, and community members. By utilizing the compiled Mission, Vision, and Core Values in creating a logo and a slogan, the District is elevating community voice to reflect who Framingham Public Schools.

There are three options for a proposed slogan or tagline which can accompany our new logo in places where we want newcomers or community members to get a snapshot of what Framingham Public Schools is all about. Here are the options for consideration:

Option 1
Embracing Different. Inspiring Futures.

Option 2
Embracing Differences. Inspiring Futures.

Option 3
Embracing Diversity. Inspiring Futures.

Community Input
Anyone who wishes to share their preferences may complete the Trilingual Google Form: Responses are being accepted through July 23, 2021. Form completion will only take a couple minutes and will help shape the visual future of Framingham Public Schools!

About Framingham Public Schools
The mission of the Framingham Public Schools is to educate each student to learn and live productively as a critically-thinking, responsible citizen in a multicultural, democratic society by providing academically challenging instructional programs taught by highly-qualified staff and supported by comprehensive services in partnership with our entire community. For news, updates, and announcements, follow Framingham Public Schools (@FraminghamPS) on Facebook, Twitter, and (@framinghamschools) on Instagram. You can also join the conversation using #FraminghamSchools.

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