While Oregon School District students will get the final say, next week the district is opening up the naming process for the new school being built in Fitchburg to the public.

The new K-6 elementary school in the Terravessa development off Hwy. MM is slated to open for classes next fall, and its naming is the first step in many to prepare new staff and students for September 2020.

At Monday’s board meeting, OSD communications director Erika Mundinger said there will be an electronic and paper version of the ballot for people to vote with starting Aug. 28. The voting will be open through Sept. 27 “to give people plenty of time to think of their ideas and submit the names they would like to share with us.”

District staff will compile the results to present to the board at its Oct. 14 meeting, where members will select two to five finalists for students to vote on later that month. When voting opens, students, parents, staff and community members are invited to submit suggestions at oregonsd.org/naming.

“People are asked to look at the criteria, fill out the form and get it back to us,” she said.

People can also submit suggestions via hard copy by picking up a paper form at the Oregon School District Office (124 East Grove St.) or by calling Mundinger at 835-4014 to make alternative arrangements.

According to the district, some of the criteria for choosing a new name include: aligns with the district mission; represents its geographical area; will endure over time without controversy; will not be confused with other regional school names; translates well in other languages; and is easily pronounced by elementary school students.

“We tried to think of every possibility, because we live in a very creative community,” superintendent Brian Busler quipped.

Email Unified Newspaper Group reporter Scott De Laruelle at scott.delaruelle@wcinet.com.