Georgia school’s new logo resembled the Nazi eagle, shocking local Jews

Atlanta primary school which shares car park with synagogue has suspended distribution of logo after outcry


A primary school in Atlanta, Georgia unveiled a new logo this week which resembled the Nazi eagle, to the shock of the local Jewish community.

East Side Elementary in Marietta, Georgia, which is located across the street from a synagogue, revealed the new logo on Monday.

It features an eagle with its wings outstretched, looking to the right, with the initials “ES” as the insignia of the school. It bears a striking resemblance to the Nazi eagle, which also shows an eagle gazing to the right with outstretched wings as well as a swastika.

The Cobb County School District — Georgia’s second-largest district – said it would stop the distribution of the new logo while it reviewed “needed changes”.

Local Jewish leaders who discussed the issue with officials said that it was being scrapped entirely, the Jewish Telegraphic Agency (JTA) reported.

In its original announcement about the new school logo, the district said: “The new logo and badges were chosen to represent the eagle soaring into excellence and to honour the history of our great school!

But the reaction from local Jewish leaders was outrage.

Marty Gilbert, executive director of Congregation Etz Chaim in Marietta, told the JTA: “People are just angry, like, how could you make that mistake?”

Many of the congregants have children who attend East Side Elementary and the school shares a car park with the shul.

Parents contacted Mr Gilbert as soon as the logo was unveiled, who contacted the school principal the following day. He received an apologetic phone call the next morning, as well as a promise to fix it.

Gilbert told the JTA that he believed it to be an honest mistake, and would give the schools “the benefit of the doubt”.

The American Jewish Committee tweeted later that day that regardless of intent, the school district should have realised “that the new logo for East Side Elementary bears a striking and uncomfortable resemblance to the Nazi eagle”.

The school district reportedly told the Atlanta Jewish Relations Council that an investigation is under way and that a new internal anti-hate programme will be created.

A spokesperson for the school district told the JTA: “Earlier this week, we learned of concerns about a new logo at East Side Elementary. The roll-out of this logo has been halted, and we are immediately reviewing needed changes.

“We understand and strongly agree that similarities to Nazi symbolism are unacceptable. Although this design was based on the US Army colonel’s eagle wings, stakeholder input has been and continues to be important to our schools.”

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