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State to Mahopac: Lose the Indian mascot or lose funding

The sports teams at Mahopac High School are the Indians, and that is no longer allowed under a new mandate set by the New York state Department of Education.

News 12 Staff

Dec 20, 2022, 11:06 AM

Updated 546 days ago

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School officials in one Hudson Valley district have a big decision to make when it comes to changing their school mascot - lose their Indian mascot or lose funding. State to Mahopac: Lose the Indian mascot or lose funding.
The sports teams at Mahopac High School are the Indians, and that is no longer allowed under a new mandate set by the New York state Department of Education.
During a board meeting on Tuesday, the president and board of the school agreed that the feather and arrowhead would be removed from their logo when the fields are repainted, making the logo just an 'M.'
Some board members are still holding onto hope that they can keep the current team name.
Last month, a letter was sent out to all New York schools ordering them to remove all Native American team names, mascots, or logos by the end of this school year.
Those districts that refuse to comply could face an array of penalties including the withholding of state aid and removal of school officers.
The mandate also states that if schools want to keep their mascots, they must have expressed approval from a recognized Native American tribe.
Last month, Mahopac school officials told News 12 they would review the new rule with attorneys and consult with the Board of Education.
This is a sensitive and controversial issue that has even reached pro sports teams. The Cleveland Indians baseball team recently became the Guardians and the NFL's Washington Redskins are now the Commanders.


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