NEW YORK STATE (WSYR-TV) — Following a meeting today, April 18, the New York State Board of Regents has unanimously approved new rules that will ban the use of Native American culture used by schools.

This includes names, logos and mascots. As well as the schools, school buildings and districts.

Back in November of 2022, NYSED sent the ruling to all New York school districts, requiring those with a Native American mascot to find a replacement.

The notice stated:

In 2001, former Commissioner of Education Richard P. Mills issued a memorandum “conclud[ing] that the use of Native American symbols or depictions as mascots can become a barrier to building a safe and nurturing school community and improving academic achievement for all students.” Commissioner Mills recognized that, while a role for local discretion existed, “there is a state interest in providing a safe and supportive learning environment for every child.” He asked
boards of education “to end the use of Native American mascots as soon as practical.”

Adding that, schools are learning environments and choosing to use Native American mascots is a reflection of “the message their choices convey to students, parents and their communities.”

There are four districts across Tioga, Tompkins, Delaware Counties that used either a Native American-inspired team name, logo or both.

Those districts’ teams are:

  • Owego Apalachin Central Indians
  • Candor Central Indians
  • Groton Central Indians
  • Sidney Central Warriors

No Broome County schools are being asked to change at this time.