ALLENTOWN, Pa. - The Allentown School District presented plans during Thursday night’s board of directors workshop meeting to vanquish the Indian mascot from the Francis D. Raub Middle School.
The district says that eliminating the Indian nickname is essential to align with the “strategic goal of creating an environment where students feel nurtured and valued.”
“It is imperative that our schools reflect mascots that are culturally sensitive and inclusive of all races and nationalities represented in schools and broader in the community," according to a memo written by Lucretia Brown, the district’s deputy superintendent of equity, accountability and school improvement.
Brown discussed the organization’s strategy to procure “a more culturally sensitive mascot” to replace the Indian.
The process will begin with removing the current mascot from things including the website, social media and letterheads.
Then the district “will create a new inclusive process to enact mascot change.” The process will include feedback from students and the new name will be recommended to the board for approval at its November meeting.
The district will also remove any Indian representations and replace them with the more culturally sensitive mascot in physical locations, including the gym, hallways and offices.
Directors had no comments on the presentation.
In other business, the administration provided information on the district’s virtual campus, which was prompted by the coronavirus pandemic.
On the first day of school, the district is reporting a 92% attendance rate, Brown said. The district said that 16,685 students were enrolled on Monday, the first day.
In other news, the directors forwarded a deal to outsource communications tasks to a Philadelphia-based company called The Donovan Group. The group has “been augmenting our communications department” for months, Brown told the board.
The firm is seeking $4,000 to $5,000 per month, according to Brown.
Also, the directors forwarded an agreement with Lehigh Carbon Community College for a dual enrollment and early college concurrent enrollment.