Richmond Road School’s Unique Branding Challenge
By Craig BurtonJune 4, 2018
Richmond Road School is an unique learning environment in Central Auckland. It is a leader in bilingual education. The focus is on teaching and learning through students' heritage languages in one of four teaching units (Rōpū) - English, French, Māori and Samoan.
Branding a school of this nature has its challenges. In this case it was about creating a logo that incorporated elements representing the four rōpū. Not only that, the resulting logo would be used as the school logo and for individual learning units.
In early 2017 I was asked by Jonathan Ramsey, Principal at Richmond Road, if I would design a new logo for the school. I flew up for a visit and was able to see each of the rōpū in action. After meeting with senior staff I was able understand a little more about Richmond Road's history, its current climate, future direction, and how the community viewed the school.
What became clear was that their learning units were like 'mini schools' within the school. Therefore it was important to create a 'family feel' around any new brand direction. This would help support their vision for a stronger sense of community under the Richmond Road School banner.
New Logo Design
With this in mind I decided to create some recognisable icons for each of the four rōpū.
KIWI CONNECTION (English Mainstream) - A Fern
TE WHĀNAU WHĀRIKI (Māori) - A Spiral Shaped Koru
L’ARCHIPEL (French-English) - Fleur-de-lis
MUA I MALAE (Bilingual Samoan) - Traditional Pasifika Pattern
The four icons were then placed within a circle to show they were part of the Richmond Road family. Each member of the family was important - without one of the rōpū the school was not whole.
To complete the logo an “R” shape was created using a lowercase "r". The lowercase “r” is symbolic of a student entering Richmond Road School (represented by the uppercase part of the “R” logo).
Without the lower case “r” shape in the logo the “R” would be incomplete. In the same way, without Richmond Road’s diverse range of students and bilingual units, it would not be the unique school it is.
The style of "R" is based on the typeface used for the school and learning unit names.
The orange and grey are based their existing school colours.
Individual logos were then created for each of the four rōpū. These looked exactly the same as the school logo with the motto written in the language of the learning unit.
I created the motto "Growing Together As One" to help reinforce their desire to be seen as one school with four rōpū moving forward in their learning together.
A lot of thought goes into creating a school logo.
If you would like to know more about the process of creating a logo for your school feel free to contact me.