Mascot Bill Heads to Legislature for Vote
Logos of some of the Wisconsin high schools that have Native American mascots: top row: Menomonee Falls Indians, Muskego Warriors, Mukwonago Indians, Waunakee Warriors. bottom row: Fort Atkinson Blackhawks, Mosinee Indians, Kewaskum Indians, Ozaukee Warriors. Republicans announced Thursday that the Assembly would consider a bill within weeks rewriting the process for forcing school districts to drop their Indian mascots, shifting the burden of proof and possibly inflaming the ire of Native Americans.
MADISON, Wis. (AP) -- The Wisconsin Legislature is scheduled to vote on a bill that would make it harder to force public schools to drop American Indian nicknames.
Both the Senate and Assembly are expected to vote on the Republican bill Tuesday.
Currently, the state Department of Public Instruction must hold a hearing on a school's race-based nickname if the agency receives a complaint from one person. The school must prove the nickname doesn't promote discrimination. DPI then decides whether the name must go.
The bill under consideration requires a complainant to collect signatures equal to 10 percent of the school district's student population to trigger a review and would have to prove discrimination. The Department of Administration, not DPI, would make the final call.