- Associated Press - Tuesday, June 16, 2015

BEAUFORT, S.C. (AP) - A school named for a black South Carolina congressman will choose a new logo after some alumni complained the existing one is offensive.

The Beaufort Gazette reports (https://bit.ly/1Le3vsJ) the decision to find a new logo for Robert Smalls International Academy came after a meeting last week.

The logo shows a man with a two-toned face, ponytail and colonial-era garb with the words “Robert Smalls Generals.” The newspaper reported the logo is a stock image that comes up on Internet searches.

Robert Smalls was an escaped slave who captured a Confederate ship during the Civil War. He later served five terms in Congress.

“At least we got rid of what was unfavorable, demeaning — I think we’re back on track,” alumni association president Linda Robinson said.

A mat with the logo at the school has been removed although it remains on the school website.

As a result of the meeting, members of the alumni association will meet with the school improvement council when school resumes later this summer. The two groups will propose three suggestions for the mascot which will then be submitted to the Beaufort County Board of Education for approval.

Robert Smalls Middle School was renamed the Robert Smalls International Academy last year as the school began serving students from prekindergarten through eighth-grade.

The school’s logo had been the letter “G” for general.

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Information from: The Beaufort Gazette, https://www.beaufortgazette.com

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