The logo for the Capistrano Unified School District’s new online high school, which bears a striking resemblance to the logo for Caltech, was removed from the virtual school’s website Thursday.
Both logos show two hands holding a torch with the school's name around the border. Both also feature the year the institutions started on the left: California Preparatory Academy in 2011, Caltech in 1891.
A Caltech spokeswoman declined to comment for this story.
Caltech has registered its logo with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office. The research and education institution describes its protected logo as having:
- Arms; fingers; hands; human hands, fingers, arm
- Blow torch; propane torches; torches; welding torch
- Circles having letters or numerals as a border; circles having punctuation as a border; letters, numerals or punctuation forming or bordering the perimeter of a circle
- Circles that are totally or partially shaded
The logo was first trademarked in December 1989, according to the patent office.
The Cal Prep logo was designed by Raad Ghantous, an interior designer based out of Dana Point. Capo Unified's board of trustees honored him at a meeting in July for his contribution to the district.
Contacted by phone Thursday, Ghantous declined comment. “I really don’t have the time to talk about it,” he said.
At the July school board meeting, Ghantous said it was his pleasure to design the logo for the district: “You guys do great work. It’s just a small way for us to say thank you very much.”
On Wednesday, Patch contacted district officials for comment. Although CUSD's spokesman did not respond, the logo was removed from the website the next day.