Pennsylvania high school keeps ‘Warriors’ name, drops mascot
GLEN ROCK, Pa. (AP) — A school board in southern Pennsylvania voted to keep the name of the Susquehannock High School mascot the “Warriors,” but will drop an image meant to portray a Native American fighter.
The school board for the Southern York County School District made the decision in a 7-2 vote on Thursday, The York Dispatch reported.
The decision followed a review by the board’s diversity committee, a hearing with testimony from Native American advocates and a petition against removing the mascot that garnered 3,800 signatures. Another petition supported removing the mascot, the newspaper reported.
Students will design the new logo and Superintendent Sandra Lemmon said the board will get an update about it next month, the newspaper reported.
Research from the board’s diversity committee found that there are no longer members of the Susquehannock tribe living in the district. It also found that the district’s curriculum does not mention the Susquehannock tribe except in a section in the 4th grade curriculum, the newspaper reported.
Some 1,900 schools across the U.S. have Native American-themed mascots. That is according to a database kept by the National Congress of American Indians, a nonprofit established in 1944 to protect Native American and Alaska Native rights.
Many schools have debated changing mascots that represent Native Americans in stereotypical or demeaning ways, but others have kept their mascot’s names while removing the logo, like Susquehannock High School decided to do.