FAIRBANKS, Alaska (KXDF) - At Tuesday evening's school board meeting, the board discussed and chose the new name for Badger Road Elementary.
At a prior meeting on April 4th, the board was presented with three names to choose from. Tr’enyaxde (Tren–*yahk–tuh) Elementary, Ursa Major Elementary, and Midnight Sun Elementary where the three proposed names.
Ultimately, the board decided on Midnight Sun Elementary to be the new name for the school, which will take effect on July 1st of this year.
Having students be able to pronounce the name of the school was both a concern of community members and board members.
"I think that we need to take the pronunciation of the name extremely seriously. The Athabaskan one, I'm glad that it honors the natives; however, it's extremely hard to remember, it's extremely hard to pronounce."
"In regards to the native name, the Athabaskan name, my only concern that it wasn't presented by the native community," said board clerk Sharon McConnell. As an Alaska native myself, I can't even pronounce that name, and I think someone had emailed us and said, 'If you can't even pronounce it then it would be abbreviated, and there's already talk about it being called T–Rex or some disrespectful name and that's not, that's not respectful."