By Bob Skolnik
The new logo for Riverside Elementary School District 96 represents sort of a back-to-the-future moment. The school district has unveiled an updated image of the iconic Riverside water tower as its new logo, replacing the "five doors" logo created by a fourth-grader in 2013. Prior to the five-doors design, the district had used an image of the water tower as its logo.
The new logo was designed by Linda Roberto, a Riverside resident who works for the district as the special education secretary. Before going to work for District 96, Roberto worked in graphic arts for design and marketing firms and did that kind of work for PeopleCare in Riverside.
"I think she did a really great job," said District 96 Superintendent Martha Ryan-Toye. "I've gotten a lot on unsolicited feedback just about how nice it looks."
Roberto took the old image of the water tower and make it sleeker and modern looking.
Roberto worked on the logo on her own time and was paid $1,575 for her work. Putting the new design on district business cards, signage, and stationary will cost around $350, Ryan-Toye said.
After moving to new administrative offices on Harlem Avenue last summer, Ryan-Toye said she began to think that it was a good time for a new logo to put on the exterior of the building.
"We probably will do some kind of update on our building," Ryan-Toye said. "We need to look at the exterior of our building anyway, as it needs a paint job this spring or summer."
The five-doors logo was a product of the first initiative of former Superintendent Bhavna Sharma-Lewis. Shortly after taking over in District 96 in the summer of 2013, Sharma-Lewis announced that there would be a competition among students to design a new logo for the district's written communication while retaining the previous water tower image for the district's website.
The winner of that competition was a design by then Central School fourth-grader Anthony Perry, now a sophomore at Riverside-Brookfield High School, who created an outline of a building with a tower and five doors, one door for each of the district's five schools, underneath a bright blue sky with a yellow sun. Each of the school doors was a different color.
The colorful five-door design used a lot of ink to print making it somewhat expensive, Ryan-Toye said. The district also wanted a more consistent look and a sleeker and more professional-looking logo.
The new logo already appears on the district's website and on district emails. It will gradually appear in the schools and on new business cards.
"It will take us awhile to make the shift altogether," Ryan-Toye said.