Belton New Tech High School @ Waskow will be home of the Dragons beginning in the 2022-2023 school year when it becomes a stand-alone campus of choice in Belton ISD. The campus currently operates as a program of Belton High School.
The Belton ISD Board of Trustees voted on the the new mascot Monday and also approved new school colors — red and purple. Both decisions have ties to the school and community’s history.
“New Tech is named after Capt. Henry Waskow, a Belton native and Purple Heart recipient who fought and died in World War II,” said principal Kim Winters. “Waskow’s legacy was largely defined by his commitment to helping others and dedicating his life to having a positive impact on those he led, his community and his country.”
Winters said the choice for purple as the secondary color was favored by students and staff because of the connection to Waskow and his Purple Heart. In 2015, the school was named the country’s first Purple Heart school.
“We tossed around a ton of ideas, but the Purple Heart and the meaning behind it is just such a big part of who we are as a campus community. We kept coming back to that,” she said. “Wednesday, for example, is our seventh annual Purple Heart Servant Leadership Day where our entire school community will complete service projects to honor Capt. Waskow’s memory.”
The Dragon mascot is a nod to Harris High School, the school local African-American students attended before Belton integrated in 1963. They were the Dragons, too.
“Our students and staff especially liked the connection to Harris High School and how dragons are associated with imagination and creativity,” Winters said. “It feels right on a lot of levels.”
Superintendent Matt Smith agreed.
“I’m proud of the way our New Tech leadership sought student and staff voice in this process,” he said. “The recommendations they brought forward were thoughtful and honoring of the school’s namesake and the area’s history. I know I’m excited to wear my red and purple gear and be the biggest Dragon fan there is.”