A new Sardis secondary school logo designed by a former student, Jason Roberts. (Facebook photo)

A new Sardis secondary school logo designed by a former student, Jason Roberts. (Facebook photo)

Chilliwack’s Sardis secondary unveils new logo done in Coast Salish style

The new-look Falcon is meant strengthen connections between Indigenous students and their school

A Sardis secondary alum has created a new logo for the school, one that reflects the Indigenous heritage of many students and staff.

Jason Roberts, whose traditional name is Sxwoxil, is a member of Tzeachten First Nation. His work of art depicts a Falcon with wings and head stretching towards the sky, done in the Coast Salish style.

The former Falcons soccer play who attended Sardis secondary in 1996, had high hopes as he worked on the logo.

“I hoped it could be a design that past, present and future First Nations students and others could love, and connect with their memories of their time at the school,” he said.

Roberts’ father attended Sardis secondary before him. His wife, children and foster-children have all attended the home of the Falcons and he said he was honoured when Sardis teacher Richard Tagle approached him with the idea. The design is 100 per cent Roberts’, with Tagle joking that he “doesn’t have an artistic bone in his body.”

But the project started with Tagle walking the halls of the school, noticing a lack of Indigenous symbols and art.

READ MORE: Hope artist Bonny Graham sees ‘big dream’ of Halq’eméylem font on major art piece come true

READ MORE: Chilliwack artist comes up with a Coast Salish design for Canada’s 150th

“There are all sorts of symbols, art and logos for Sardis on display, but very little (outside of the Aboriginal Education Room) has a connection to the Stó:lo peoples of the area,” he observed. “And there is definitely nothing in the largest gathering space in the school, the gym.”

That was Tagle’s first goal when he approached Sardis principal Dan Heisler.

“My goal was to have the logo painted in the gym and to have hoodies and eventually other gear as walking art pieces that show the connection to the Stó:lo community,” he said. “I feel that our aboriginal students would have a closer connection to the school, and see it as their school with symbols that represent who they are.

“I chose Jason because his family is a Sardis secondary family (his son played soccer with mine), and he was excited to help.”

Heisler was equally excited to green light the project and procure the funding.

“There are some traditional representations in a few common areas in the school, but I think Richard’s idea of providing recognition in our largest gathering space (and often where most outside guests are in attendance) and creating a walking representation is outstanding,” Heisler said. “The immediate feedback I have received from within the Sardis secondary community is one of excitement, with many staff wanting to somehow incorporate the new design into their area/teams/programs.”

When it comes to sports, Sardis athletic director Brad Geary will have a say in how the logo is used, and he looks forward to those discussions.

“I would be extremely proud to use this version in a variety of ways,” he said. “To highlight the awesome spirit of inclusivity at our school as well as the rich aboriginal heritage in our community.”


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