CREATED Jul. 23, 2013
MUKWONAGO - The Mukwonago School District is proud of its nickname "the Indians,'' but a state law is forcing them to change it, calling it racially insensitive. Parents and district leaders are refusing to change it.
Superintendent Shawn McNulty has been fighting since 2010 to keep his district's "Indian" nickname and logo, and argues the state is picking on certain schools.
"Not all districts are being treated the same way. In Menomonee Falls for example, they are allowed to keep their Indian name and logo. Mukwonago, 20 miles south in the same county is not," said McNulty.
A state law allows one resident to file a complaint over a race-based name they believe promotes discrimination. A student filed a complaint back in 2010.
The State Department of Instruction has given the district until August 15 to stop using the "Indian" nickname and logo and could fine the district anywhere from $100 to $1000 dollars every day they continue using it.
"It's not as easy as changing the name. There's old trophies, there's old plaques, there's donations that came from booster clubs that reference the Indians," said district attorney Samuel Hall.
State Representatives Steve Nass and Daniel Craig are working on legislation that would allow the district to keep its nickname and logo.