Uproar at Canisteo-Greenwood School Board Meeting Over Redskins Mascot


More than 50 people crowded inside with more than 20 standing in the hallway outside the Canisteo-Greenwood School District board room the night of June 10 to criticize the district decision to eliminate the Redskin logo and name, plus protest how the choice was explained to students, reports the Hornell, New York Evening Tribune.

Contrary to what was earlier believed to be the case, Canisteo-Greenwood School District School Board President Michael Nisbet said the Canisteo-Greenwood board has made no decision. "Our decision was to investigate the issue," he said. "We probably should have sought public input.”

The issue will likely be taken up at the next board meeting July 8 in the much larger high school auditorium. "If we look at all sides and the majority wants [to go] one way or another, that will be my preference,” Nisbet said.

Interim superintendent Charles H. Clemens is taking heat from the community for having earlier declared that the district will not “keep the Redskins name" or symbol, according to the Evening Tribune. It was Clemens's decree that led to the enormous outrage expressed Monday night toward the district's school board members.

After New York's Cooperstown High School dropped its "Redskins" mascot earlier in the year, only three high schools in the entire state still use the mascot, considered offensive--even racist--by many Native Americans, according to Capital News Service's The Other Redskins study: Canisteo-Greenwood, Lancaster High in Lancaster and Oriskany High in Oriskany.

The July 8 Canisteo-Greenwood School District board meeting is expected to be packed and tense.


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