Student-designed Permanent School Fund logo unveiled

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Student-designed Permanent School Fund logo unveiled

Permanent School Fund logo

Feb. 1, 2019

The Permanent School Fund, an education endowment that has helped pay for Texas students’ education for more than 170 years, today has a new logo and it is fitting that the logo was  designed by one of the fund’s beneficiaries.

A logo created by Melissa Richardson, a sophomore at Drippings Springs High School in the Dripping Springs Independent School District, was selected by the State Board of Education (SBOE) as the winner of the “Brand the Fund” logo contest.

The first runner-up award went to Spandana Kamepalli, a junior at Vandegrift High School in Leander ISD.

A total of 442 Texas public high school students submitted 521 unique designs in the “Brand the Fund” contest.

“The State Board of Education is grateful to all the students and art teachers who took time to learn about the Permanent School Fund. Our student artists submitted phenomenal designs,” said Tom Maynard, the State Board of Education member who oversaw the contest.

“The distinctly Texas design selected provides a unique image for the PSF, which is today the country’s largest education endowment,” he said.

Richardson’s winning red, white, and blue design features a shield and a mortar board that incorporates the name of the fund and the year the perpetual education fund was created.

Richardson received a replica of her design and a check for $3,000. Her design will hang in the Permanent School Fund offices and will be used on a variety of fund materials, such as the annual report.

Kamepalli received a trophy and a check for $1,000 as the runner-up. SBOE members made personal donations to cover the two cash prizes.

Additionally, the board today approved a resolution honoring the two student designers and approved a resolution for Laurie and Tyler Wieghat, two College Station-based professional graphic designers who helped facilitate the competition.

A judging panel comprised of professional graphic artists and representatives from the SBOE, the Permanent School Fund, and the Texas Education Agency reviewed all eligible submissions and narrowed the field to the top 10 finalists.

Top 10 finalists

Along with Richardson and Kamepalli, the finalists were:

  • Aaron Ballif
    Conroe High School
    Conroe ISD
    Educator sponsor Stephanie Scaletta
  • Hagen Carter
    Stephenville High School
    Stephenville ISD
    Educator sponsor Emily McLemore
  • Maite Gordo
    Cypress Springs High School
    Cypress-Fairbanks ISD
    Educator sponsor Diana Lookabaugh
  • Ashleigh Jamison
    Round Rock High School
    Round Rock ISD
    Educator sponsor Matthew Wilson
  • Kathryn Kelly
    Cedar Ridge High School
    Round Rock ISD
    Educator sponsor Elise Arellano
  • Arthur Mangum
    Conroe High School
    Conroe ISD
    Educator sponsor Stephanie Scaletta
  • Ben Meyer
    James Bowie High School
    Austin ISD
    Educator sponsor Gina Cottone
  • Natalie Tieu
    Cypress Springs High School
    Cypress-Fairbanks ISD
    Educator sponsor Diana Lookabaugh

    The top 10 designs underwent trademark reviews before the winner and runner-up were selected by the board.  

The fund has played a vital role in Texas throughout its history. The state’s first constitution in 1845 created a perpetual fund for the support of free public schools. In 1854, the state provided $2 million for the fund.

Today, the total Permanent School Fund, which includes not only assets managed by the SBOE but also assets managed by the School Land Board, stands at about $44 billion. It provides funding for instructional materials, technology and general operating costs and provides millions in costs savings to school district and charter schools through the bond guarantee program. Learn more about this Texas treasure at

PSF logo winner Melissa Richardson

Art teacher Jay Bates and SBOE member Tom Maynard congratulate contest winner Melissa Richardson.First runner-up Spandana Kamepalli and parents

Leander ISD Spandana Kamepalli and her parents Supriya and Srinivas Kamepalli celebrate her selection as first- runner-up in the PSF logo contest.