Will new name mean new image for Forest View Alternative School?
Officials at Northwest Suburban High School District 214 will discuss renaming Forest View Alternative School at Thursday's school board meeting in an effort to change what they say are misconceptions about the school.
"The current name poses several concerns. The word alternative suggests that all students have a reputation for drug involvement, gang affiliation, and legal problems," according to a district memo. "After years of this reputation, students, parents, community members, and District 214 staff continually express a negative perspective about our school. Without a change in name, it is challenging to eliminate false perceptions."
Officials said the name also causes confusion between Forest View Alternative School and Forest View Educational Center, the district's administrative office, as well as the former Forest View High School, which closed in 1986.
The new suggested name is The Academy at Forest View, according to the memo.
"While this allows us to rebrand and separate from the stigma attached to Forest View Alternative School, The Academy at Forest View,
also maintains history," the memo states.
The school's mascot would remain the Falcon.
Forest View Alternative School is known as a therapeutic day school for high-risk special needs students, according to the district website, which says "the school focuses on redirecting inappropriate and counter productive student behavior."
District 214 has six traditional high schools and three alternative programs, including Forest View. The district also has a Newcomer Center for recently arrived immigrant students with minimal English language skills and Vanguard School for students who have fallen behind on credits at their home school.
The District 214 school board will discuss the naming issue during its Thursday night meeting at 7 p.m. in the board room at the Forest View Educational Center, 2121 S. Goebbert Road, Arlington Heights.