The future students of Oak Hills High School will have their first chance to make their mark on the school this fall.

The Hesperia Unified School District's third comprehensive high school is already well underway, with much of the school erected and even the school's football stadium seemingly ready to go.

"Buildings don't make a school," principal Larry Porras said Thursday. "The people do. If you don't have a caring staff that loves working with kids, it's all for naught."

And a school also needs a mascot and school colors. ASR Constructors, the company building the new high school, needs to know those, so that it can begin putting down carpet, laying linoleum and more.

"The construction guys are ready. 'Come on.'"

On Friday, August 8, at Cedar Middle School, Porras will be holding an informational meeting for the future community of Oak Hills High School. He'll be giving an update on construction, meeting some residents for the first time and discussing that mascot and those school colors.

Porras has been getting input from school district personnel, educators and community members, but just with Hesperia High and Sultana High previously, the ultimate decision will be made by Oak Hills High School students.

"We've got what I call the preliminary [choices], but they won't be final until after this meeting," he said. Popular choices that come out during the meeting will be incorporated in a survey sent to Cedar Middle School students and, should the school board finalize the school boundaries in time, Hesperia High students who will be moved over to the new school in 2009.

"The students will decide the very first week of school."

Porras has also been getting input via the HUSD Web site (www.hesperia.org), but he's also gotten a lot of unsuitable suggestions: Mojave High School already has coyotes as a mascot, and Canyon Ridge has the ravens.

"In our league, there are three blue schools," he said.

Oak Hills High School is set to open August 2009, with just under 2,000 students from grades 9 through 11, and a maximum capacity of 3,100 students.

The Oak Hills High School information meeting will take place on Friday, August 8, at 6 p.m. at Cedar Middle School, 13565 Cedar Street.

Beau Yarbrough can be reached at 956-7108 or at beau@hesperiastar.com.