Class of 2011 leaves their mark on Blue Valley with new outdoor mural

Hailey McEntee, Co-Editor

Editor’s note: In the September issue of the Tiger Print, the headline stated that the mural was a gift from the class of 2010, while the story stated that it was from 2011. The mural was a gift from the class of 2011.

A new exterior wall mural was recently installed as a gift from the class of 2011. However, due to color variation, it was removed and will be replaced at a later date. It will be 50 feet long and 5 or 6 feet tall, made of sheet metal aluminum and spray painted with a weatherable paint. This mural of tiger eyes will be secured to the building and will be seen from the west parking lot.
“The class of 2011 decided that, originally, they had wanted to put up a digital sign out in front of our school, but the county said we couldn’t do it,” Principal Scott Bacon said. “So, they came up with a wall mural instead. We worked with a company in Texas and came across an impression of a tiger and decided, ‘Wow, that looks pretty good.’”
Science teacher Azie Taghizadeh helps in the process of brainstorming with each senior class.
“I think students will be excited to see something different instead of just white walls,” she said. “I hope even visitors coming in will think it makes our school different.”
Class gifts are usually decided during each class’s senior year and funds are raised by that class.
“The senior class gifts are a tradition that goes back a long time, and every senior class has the opportunity to leave the school with some sort of remembrance of their class,” Bacon said.
From freshman to senior year, each class raises money that ends up going toward their class gift. One of the ways they raise money is through the Senior-Faculty Challenge. Once the seniors have their class picnic at the end of the year, any money left goes toward their class gift. Taghizadeh said classes usually raise between $4,000 and $9,000.
She said this year she would like to have more input from the class as a whole on what the senior gift should be.
“It would be nice to get suggestions from people other than the executives,” Taghizadeh said. “It would be cool to see their thoughts so they can give back to the school that maybe gave them so much.”
Bacon said his favorite thing about class gifts is the creativity.
“Typically, I will sit down with the senior class officers, and the first thing they’ll ask is ‘Do we have some pressing needs?’” he said. “And so we kind of go through those pressing needs, and then my directive to them is to try and be creative. If they can come up with something that really meets a need of ours, then great. If they have something a little out of the box that they want to pursue, then that’s great also. But, if they do that, we typically have to get approval.”
Bacon said class gifts set our school apart from other schools.
“We will have something that no other school, that I’m aware of, has and ever will have because our tiger is copyrighted,” he said. “So the way ours looks is the only place it is going to look exactly like that. It will be unique to Blue Valley High School.”
Bacon said the mural will make a prideful statement.
“When people come over the hill towards the school from the west, the first thing they are going to see are the eyes of the tiger,” he said.