Adidas to Help Schools Change Native American Mascots
The clock is ticking for more than a dozen schools in Oregon. By 2017, a state mandate requires they remove all names and mascots associated with Native American tribes.
Now sportswear company Adidas says its new nationwide effort will help schools with redesigns and the cost to do that.
Brent Weisberg has the story.
--REPORTER PKG-AS FOLLOWS--
(Voice of Jeff Clark, Amity School District Superintendent) "As a district, we were disappointed that the State Board of Education went this route."
FROM THE PARKING LOT OF AMITY HIGH SCHOOL, THIS IS WHAT GREETS TEACHERS, STUDENTS AND COMMUNITY MEMBERS EACH AND EVERY DAY..
JEFF CLARK, THE SUPERINTENDENT FOR AMITY SCHOOL DISTRICT, SENT ME THIS AND OTHER PHOTOS OF THE MASCOT FOR AMITY HIGH SCHOOL.
(Voice of Jeff Clark, Amity School District Superintendent) "Currently we have a Native American head dress."
BY 20-17, THE STATE OF OREGON IS REQUIRING THAT AMITY HIGH SCHOOL - AND 14 OTHER SCHOOLS - STRIP THEIR MASCOTS BECAUSE OF THEIR CONNECTION TO NATIVE AMERICAN TRIBES.
(Voice of Jeff Clark, Amity School District Superintendent) "It is an identity that has been around for a long time. That logo is everywhere and it really is a connection."
IN REEDSPORT, THE SCHOOL MASCOT FOR THE REEDSPORT COMMUNITY CHARTER SCHOOL IS PAINTED RIGHT OVER THE FRONT DOOR.
THE SCHOOL PRINCIPAL, VINCE SWAGERTY, SAYS TO BE IN COMPLIANCE WITH THE STATE, THE SCHOOL IS GOING TO HAVE TO RE-DESIGN AND THEN RE-IMPLIMENT A NEW LOGO.
AND THAT COULD BE TIME AND FINANCIALLY CONSUMING.
(Vince Swagerty, Reedsport Community Charter School Principal) ""If it has to come from our general funds, that's teaching staff or supplies, or materials or things like that that we're not going to be able to purchase."
SUPERINTENDENT CLARK AGREES.
(Voice of Jeff Clark, Amity School District Superintendent) "There's no money coming from the state to offset the costs that are being imposed."
MANY SCHOOLS HAVE THEIR NAMES AND MASCOTS ON UNIFORMS, IN THE GYM, ON SCOREBOARDS AND PAINTED ON THE WALL.
ALL OF IT WILL NEED REPLACEMENT.
(Vince Swagerty, Reedsport Community Charter School Principal) "If the Adidas company can step in and help out with that we could be forever grateful."
REPORTING IN DOWNTOWN PORTLAND TODAY, BRENT WEISBERG, KOIN-SIX NEWS.
Adidas says about two thousand high schools across the U.S. use names potentially insensitive to tribal communities.
That brings us to this week's survey question. You just heard about the mascot changes in the state of Oregon. Well here in Ohio, we still have one professional sports team that uses the American Indian as their mascot. That's the Cleveland Indians baseball team.
So we want to know, do you think it's time for the Cleveland Indians to change their mascot?