Dear OCSD Community Members:

As you know, the Oneida City School District is changing its mascot as per New York State Education Department mandate. To ensure that this mascot change incorporates the values, opinions and suggestions of our community, we have worked with a standing Shared Decision Committee – comprised of students, staff and community members – throughout the process.

Beginning in January 2023, the Shared Decision Committee held meetings to decide the future of Oneida CSD’s mascot and associated imagery. In April, a community-wide survey was sent out on our website, social media pages and ParentSquare to gather the community’s initial thoughts regarding a new potential mascot. In June, a second survey was sent out to the community, with mascot suggestions narrowed down by our Shared Decision Committee.

Unfortunately, due to concerns from students, staff and community members regarding one of the final three options, the committee made the decision to reconvene and send out three new suggestions: the Oneida Dragons, the Oneida Express and the Oneida Lions. The final survey was sent out in July on our website, social media pages and ParentSquare and received nearly 1,000 responses.

After a review of the responses, the Oneida Express was determined as the winning mascot concept, honoring the City of Oneida’s history as an important stop on the railroad between Syracuse and Utica. Over the next few months, the Shared Decision Committee will continue to develop the mascot, determining final imagery and logo design.

We would like to thank the community for its vested interest in maintaining a school identity that continues to honor our local history.


Matthew Carpenter

Superintendent of Schools