What We've Learned
The passion, commitment and love for Freeman High School — what we would call “Intensity and Pride” — is powerful and held by respondents on all sides of the issue; the Freeman Family cares deeply about our school and this topic.
This matters to members of many generations of Freeman students, from several thoughtful (and varied) responses from the first students who attended DSF , to current students to parents of future Freeman students.
Many do not. They feel that the term “Rebel,” given our school and city’s history, can never be reframed to fully separate from a group that fought against America and for reasons that included upholding the institution of slavery.
Many point to their own experiences to powerfully illustrate the point above.
Many have changed their view over time.
Many are conflicted or undecided.
How we are viewed by others matters. This includes other schools we compete with, those who drive past our school or see our T-shirts but for whom the term has not been re-branded.
Striving to be a unified community is a concern for many and there is a worry that a mascot change could damage the sense of family, across generations and demographics, something that several noted is special about Freeman.