TAMPA, Fla. — The Hillsborough County School Board is putting a pause on its mascot changes at half a dozen schools.
- School board holds off on mascot changes
- Students and parents voice opposition to changes at board meeting
- Board to continue conversation June 11
- Bay area school mascot changes continue national trend
That decision came following public comments from students and parents upset about mascot changes at Brooker Elementary in Brandon.
In May, the district made a move to allow changes to some Native American mascots. But school board memners say they weren't part of that decision-making process.
Working with a parent advisory group representing the Native American community, all six schools have committed to choosing a new mascot for the future.
The five elementary schools and one middle school are Adams Middle School, Brooker Elementary, Forest Hills Elementary, Ruskin Elementary, Summerfield Elementary and Thonotosassa Elementary. Adams has been the Warriors, while Thonotosassa has been Chiefs and Summerfield has been the Indians. The elementary schools: Forest Hills, Brooker and Ruskin were all Braves.
School officials said Chamberlain High (Chiefs) and East Bay High (Indians) will keep their mascot names but modify rituals to be less insensitive.
- READ: Maryland CNS study of schools removing mascots
- LINK: National Congress of American Indians opposition to mascots
- READ: Supreme Court ruling on offensive trademarks
- RELATED: Hillsborough Schools Planning Native American Mascot Changes
According to the district, "current mascots do not respect every culture and every person in our communities.
At Tuesday's meeting, some people complained the change will waste money and take away from school tradition.
School board members say they will review the process of changing mascots.
The issue is expected to be dicussed more at the board's next meeting on June 11.