Atlanta’s Midtown High School unveils new logos after Grady name change

The Grady “G” painted on the steps of Grady High School is shown in this file photo taken on June 26, 2020, in Atlanta. CHRISTINA MATACOTTA FOR THE ATLANTA JOURNAL-CONSTITUTION.
The Grady “G” painted on the steps of Grady High School is shown in this file photo taken on June 26, 2020, in Atlanta. CHRISTINA MATACOTTA FOR THE ATLANTA JOURNAL-CONSTITUTION.

Credit: Christina Matacotta

Credit: Christina Matacotta

They’ll still be the Knights, and the team colors will remain red and gray.

But the logos and branding for the Atlanta high school across from Piedmont Park are getting a major makeover.

The new athletic and academic logos for Midtown High School have been unveiled. The rebranding comes after the Atlanta Board of Education voted to change the name of Henry W. Grady High School to Midtown High School. The name change, and rebranding, is effective June 1. Images courtesy of Midtown High School
The new athletic and academic logos for Midtown High School have been unveiled. The rebranding comes after the Atlanta Board of Education voted to change the name of Henry W. Grady High School to Midtown High School. The name change, and rebranding, is effective June 1. Images courtesy of Midtown High School

Credit: John Brandhorst

Credit: John Brandhorst

The Atlanta school board voted in December to change the name of Henry W. Grady High School to Midtown High School, citing the racist viewpoints espoused by the managing editor of The Atlanta Constitution who died in 1889.

The class of 2021 will be the last Grady graduates. The school’s new name is effective June 1, and with it comes a new visual identity.

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Gone is the big Grady “G,” a well-known symbol in Atlanta Public Schools and beyond. The new logo features a modern “M” chosen for its distinctive, functional and recognizable design, said Principal Betsy Bockman.

The familiar Knight mascot remains, but she said who it represents has shifted to include more recent role models, from poets to politicians.

“While ‘Knights’ traditionally hail from medieval times, Midtown High School’s modern warriors are our present and future cultural leaders inspired by today’s diverse heroes — John R. Lewis, Malala Yousafzai, Dr. Anthony Fauci, Emma Watson, President Jimmy Carter, Stacey Abrams, Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Bill Gates, Greta Thunberg and Amanda Gorman,” Bockman wrote in a letter this week to the school community.

Midtown High School, the new name of Henry W. Grady High School, unveiled new logos as part of the Atlanta school's rebranding effort. Image courtesy of Midtown High School
Midtown High School, the new name of Henry W. Grady High School, unveiled new logos as part of the Atlanta school's rebranding effort. Image courtesy of Midtown High School

Credit: John Brandhorst

Credit: John Brandhorst

A group of teachers, students, alumni and others suggested options for the logos, and a committee was tasked with making the final selections.

John Brandhorst, who chairs the school’s fine arts department, led the effort.

The result was dozens of new graphics, in variations of the red-and-gray color scheme, for use by clubs, teams and academic programs.

Midtown High School, the new name of Henry W. Grady High School, unveiled new logos as part of the Atlanta school's rebranding effort. Image courtesy of Midtown High School
Midtown High School, the new name of Henry W. Grady High School, unveiled new logos as part of the Atlanta school's rebranding effort. Image courtesy of Midtown High School

Credit: John Brandhorst

Credit: John Brandhorst

Midtown High School, the new name of Henry W. Grady High School, unveiled new logos as part of the Atlanta school's rebranding effort. Image courtesy of Midtown High School
Midtown High School, the new name of Henry W. Grady High School, unveiled new logos as part of the Atlanta school's rebranding effort. Image courtesy of Midtown High School

Credit: John Brandhorst

Credit: John Brandhorst

Midtown High School, the name that will replace Henry W. Grady High School, unveiled new academic and athletic logos as part of the Atlanta school's rebranding. Images courtesy of Midtown High School
Midtown High School, the name that will replace Henry W. Grady High School, unveiled new academic and athletic logos as part of the Atlanta school's rebranding. Images courtesy of Midtown High School

Credit: John Brandhorst

Credit: John Brandhorst

The school plans to hold a series of training sessions this week about the use of the new graphics.

“As we enter this new, exciting phase, I am confident that together we will carry forward the school’s many wonderful traditions to honor its past and create new ones to carry us into the future,” Bockman wrote.

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