Juanita HS “Rebels” mascot finally defeated

Juanita HS “Rebels” mascot finally defeated

School administration will now begin selecting a new mascot.

The Juanita High School “Rebels” mascot got the boot after Lake Washington School District administrators decided to dump what many viewed as an offensive homage to the Confederacy on July 13.

The mascot has been a source of contention for years, as student groups had pushed unsuccessfully to get the mascot changed. During a July 13 Lake Washington School Board meeting, Superintendent Dr. Jon Holmen removed the “Rebels” as Juanita High School’s mascot. School administration will now begin selecting a new mascot.

A press release from the school district said Holmen began reviewing the mascot and met with students, parents and administrators. Along with the removal of the mascot, the district updated its policy on choosing and removing school mascots. This included granting the superintendent the right to remove a school name or mascot, and requiring school names and mascots to be aligned with district values.

Previously, only current students could vote to change or retain a mascot.

“Juanita High School students, staff, parents, alumni and community have the opportunity to write the next chapter of Juanita High School,” Holmen said in a press release. “I understand there are stakeholders that do not agree with this decision.”

The debate over the mascot has been happening for years. In coverage from 2018, dueling petitions were circulating to both remove and retain the mascot. Those who supported keeping the mascot said “Rebels” referenced the “revolutionary” approach to education the school took, including short class periods.

One petition to retain the mascot from that time said “there is no white supremacy in Juanita High surrounding areas.”

But others disagreed. A Juanita High School logo from 1990 featured the “stars and bars” behind the school’s logo. The “stars and bars” is associated with the Confederacy. The 1990 logo was changed after a Black staff member raised concerns about it.

Another picture included in the 1986 yearbook shows students holding a Confederate flag with the title “In 1986, Juanita High School is riding a rebel wave.”

In another instance, during a mid-1990s varsity football game, Juanita students painted their faces with the “stars and bars” and chanted racist names and slurs. The assistant student body president later apologized for the incident.


In consideration of how we voice our opinions in the modern world, we’ve closed comments on our websites. We value the opinions of our readers and we encourage you to keep the conversation going.

Please feel free to share your story tips by emailing editor@redmond-reporter.com.

To share your opinion for publication, submit a letter through our website https://www.redmond-reporter.com/submit-letter/. Include your name, address and daytime phone number. (We’ll only publish your name and hometown.) We reserve the right to edit letters, but if you keep yours to 300 words or less, we won’t ask you to shorten it.

Juanita HS “Rebels” mascot finally defeated

More in News

File photo
Do you need to pay for your COVID hospital stay?

Washington state law requires hospitals to provide free care for certain income brackets.

Stock photo
State AG Ferguson leads effort supporting local journalism

Federal legislation offers tax credits to subscribers, businesses and news organizations

C-17 at Joint Base Lewis McChord airstrip (courtesy of United States Military)
King County councilmember proposes program to aid transition of Afghan interpreters who served the U.S. overseas

Program would provide job training and learning opportunities for Afghan interpreters and advisors.

Vaccinations taking place. File photo
Inslee: No ‘massive disruptions’ as worker vax rates hit 90%

A surge in vaccinations has eased concern about service slowdowns ahead of a Monday deadline.

King County Councilmember Kathy Lambert (file photo)
Lambert removed from King County Council leadership roles

Lambert received backlash after her campaign used flyers that depicted her opponent as a puppet.

Union members picket in front of new Facebook campus in Redmond on Sept. 16 (photo by Cameron Sheppard)
Northwest Carpenters Union members vote to accept contract with AGC

The agreement comes after weeks of striking.

King County Councilmember Kathy Lambert (file photo)
After doubling down on “racist” flyer, Lambert publicly apologizes

Apology encouraged by King County Council colleagues.

Pixabay image
School psychologist among three charged with immoral communication with a minor

Redmond detectives conducted an online predator sting using fake profiles.

Courtesy of King County Police Officers Guild
Office lacks power over King County law enforcement in misconduct investigations

Director Tamer Abouzeid presents OLEO annual report to law and justice committee on Tuesday.

Most Read