Hutchinson Public Schools has Hutchinson High School, Hutchinson Middle School, Park Elementary and West Elementary. Now it also has Tiger Elementary.
The School Board unanimously approved the name for the new two-story addition on the north side of West Elementary at its regular meeting last week, with Board Member Erin Knudtson noting the name gave the building its own identity.
The name Tiger Elementary was voted on by staff and community members amongst a group of five suggestions that were the most popular. Staff submitted 161 votes, with 57 going to Crow River Elementary and 53 to Tiger Elementary. Community members submitted 283 votes, with 165 going to Tiger Elementary and 65 to Crow River Elementary. All told, Tiger Elementary had 218 votes and Crow River Elementary had 122. The other options were Luce Line Elementary, Harvest Elementary and Sunset Elementary.
"The community has spoken," Superintendent Daron VanderHeiden said, noting it was important to move forward with a name in order to fill out official paperwork for the new building.
Board Chair JoEllen Kimball said that while Tiger Elementary wasn't her favorite, it was a good fit due to the Hutchinson Tigers sports teams and the name length fitting in with other buildings. She recalled West Elementary not being her favorite name either, but ultimately it became the building's identity.
"It will become whatever we call it," she said.