When Jordan Valley School set out to update their logo, a staid black-and-white mountain silhouette dating back to 1975, they wound up venturing in the near-opposite direction.
The staff, faculty, and parents of Canyons District’s school for students with intellectual disabilities wanted something that better reflected the school’s diversity, strength of spirit, and the resourcefulness and adaptability of those who learn and teach there. “I can’t stop smiling, because we’re super excited about what we’ve come up with,” said Jordan Valley Principal Stacey Nofsinger while unveiling the new branding — a cheery, brightly-hued chameleon — at a recent Board of Education meeting.
Determined. Patient. Fearless. Adaptable. These are but a few of the qualities embodied by the chameleon, and which reflect Jordan Valley community, Nofsinger explained.
Because Jordan Valley students range in age from kindergarten to 22, the school needed something that would appeal to multiple ages. The chameleon felt like the perfect fit, because like its color-changing superpower suggests, there’s more to it than meets the eye. “Like our students, you’ll find they have an intelligence beyond just what the naked eye can see,” Nofsinger said.
Rather than be locked into official colors, the school chose to embrace the rainbow spectrum of the chameleon. “We wanted something everyone could rally around,” Nofsinger says. “Our students exude that same brightness in the lives of the people they come in contact with.”
Above all, she added, the chameleon conveys adaptability in the face of life’s inconsistencies, which is a characteristic of both Jordan Valley students and faculty. Many of Jordan Valley’s students aren’t able to communicate in conventional ways and have to find other means to ensure their needs are met, and the staff and faculty have to be equally flexible in supporting them, Nofsinger said.
Fittingly, the chameleon’s tail serves as the “J” in the Jordan Valley, signifying the centrality of its students. “Our students are everything,” Nofsinger said. “Without them, there would be no Jordan Valley.”
The new logo suite was developed in collaboration with students, staff, faculty, parents and the community of Jordan Valley supporters. Designed by Canyons District graphic designer Jeff Olson, it has already been put to use in adorning spirit-boosting t-shirts, which the students are wearing with pride.
Said Canyons District Board member Mont Millerberg, who also participated in the rebranding process, “I can’t think of many things I’ve done on the Board of Education that have been this much fun.”