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Action taken to remove Cheyenne Mountain High School Indian mascot

Cheyenne Mountain High School, Colorado Springs

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (KRDO) - A draft resolution regarding the removal of the Cheyenne Mountain High School Indian mascot is moving forward after thousands of students, alumni, and local citizens recently expressed their disapproval.

The draft resolution was released to KRDO after it was written up at a District Board of Education meeting Monday night.

The resolution calls for the retiring of the Indian mascot and team name at Cheyenne Mountain High School immediately upon its approval, citing several national Native American organizations against its use.

It says "the continued use of Native American mascots, symbols, images, logos, nicknames, and behaviors interferes with the educational experiences of members of our community."

The draft also says "the nickname, images, and logos are or will be removed, and school materials bearing the existing nickname and related imagery may not be acquired and must be phased out by August 1, 2021."

"Other Native American names, titles and other instances of Native American appropriation, including but not limited to Kiva, Smoke Signals, Pow Wow, Tribe, and Akichita, are or will be removed, and no school materials or events shall bear such Native American names, titles and other instances of appropriation by August 1, 2021."

If approved, the resolution would allow Superintendent Walt Cooper to appoint a committee composed of a district representative and a dozen students and community members to recommend a new mascot and team name to the Board of Education.

The draft resolution states that the committee "shall give due consideration to the initial team name, the Mountaineers."

Any citizens, board members, and school personnel would be allowed to submit names for consideration by the committee, which will present the top three names to the board.

The decision to move forward with the draft resolution comes after years of public debate, and a recent online petition to remove the Indian mascot which has gained more than 6,000 signatures. A petition to keep the mascot has around 2,000 signatures.

The Cheyenne Mountain School Board also listened to more than a dozen arguments to change the mascot at a meeting late last month.

The Board of Education is set to continue working on the resolution, and possibly vote on it, at its work session in October.

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Julia Donovan


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