Four school districts in Michigan are receiving grants to change racist mascots.
The Native American Heritage Foundation (NAHF) provides funding that can be used to replace or revise mascots and images that may be deemed offensive to Native Americans or may convey inaccurate depictions of Native American culture and values, according to their website. .
According to a press release from the foundation, four school districts are receiving funds to rename or replace mascots. Funds will be used to update facilities, uniforms and more.
- Saranac Community Schools will receive $139,318.90 to rebrand the current mascot from the “R-word” to “Red Hawks” before the next academic year.
- Hartford Public Schools receives $132,249.25 to rebrand the current mascot from “Indians” to “Huskies” and implement a new program to help build meaningful connections with students.
- Lansing School District receives $87,500 to rebrand the current “Big Reds” mascot to a new, culturally appropriate mascot and logo.
- Chippewa Hills School District will receive $52,371.20 to replace the current Native American images with “Golden Knights” images for the “Warriors” mascot.
“If we fund the dismantling of racist mascot images now, we will have more money in the future for proactive programs and curriculum,” NAHF President Jamie Stuck said in the statement. Stuck is also Chairman of the Nottawaseppi Huron Band of the Potawatomi Tribal Council.
The foundation also provides funds “to enhance programs and educational resources related to Native American history in Michigan.
Western Michigan University’s Native American Affairs Council will receive $12,295 to host Mdewakanton Dakota’s “A Conversation with Dallas Goldtooth” and Dine with Native News Online live streaming the event. The Michigan College Access Network is receiving $55,000 to continue funding the “College Completion Corps,” a program that places completion coaches at three tribal colleges.
The rewards will be distributed in August.