Westford Historical Commission
The purpose of this policy is to ensure the appropriate selection of names for school structures and spaces including but not limited to, school buildings, athletic facilities and open spaces that are used by the public outside of the traditional school day. School spaces not traditionally frequented by the public, such as labs, teacher lounges and classrooms, are not considered under this policy.
The School Committee shall appoint a standing Naming Committee responsible for proposing names for the school structures and spaces noted above. This committee shall have a minimum of five members and abide by the Open Meeting Law. Members of this Committee will be appointed and re-appointed by the School Committee on a yearly basis. The School Committee will make every effort to ensure that the Committee has diverse membership to represent the community’s interest.
Criteria Considered when Naming School Facilities
The purpose of naming is to recognize, honor or memorialize. Buildings, facilities and spaces may be named after persons, organizations, historical Town sites, or given functional names related to the purpose of the space. If a facility is to be named after a person, that person must be of exemplary character (one suggested replacement exemplify the values of Westford), have made an outstanding contribution to education, humanity or the community, or have displayed outstanding leadership, or be a person of historical significance.
Naming Structures and Spaces
When a new structure or facility is built, or a name is proposed for an existing space, the School Committee shall request the Naming Committee to reconvene. The Naming Committee shall solicit ideas from the community and may also submit their own ideas. The Naming Committee shall establish, implement and maintain a process for evaluating naming proposals. This evaluation process shall reflect the values of the community and the school system.
The Naming Committee shall provide at least two names for School Committee consideration along with documentation supporting their criteria, i.e the story behind the proposed name. The School Committee shall vote on the nomination at the next scheduled meeting and bring the resolution for approval of the endorsed name to Town Meeting. If Town Meeting passes the proposed resolution, the Naming Committee will propose wording for a permanent memorial that includes a brief statement describing why the name was so honored.