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Hurricane High School mascot sparks conversation

The Redskins is the mascot for Hurricane High School.
The Redskins is the mascot for Hurricane High School.(Kim Rafferty)
Published: Jul. 14, 2020 at 7:37 PM EDT
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CHARLESTON, W.Va. (WSAZ) - Hurricane High School has a decades-long tradition with the Redskins as their mascot.

In light of a nationwide debate, two groups of alumni have started petitions-- one to protect the name and the other to change it.

Taylor, who has been the football coach at Hurricane High School for nine years, said he has not signed either petition.

“If natives want to come in and sit down with our people and whatever and we can work something out,” he said.

Taylor said each year the school gives out awards associated with what they believe the mascot embodies, including strength.

Chelsea Fields has a child who attends Hurricane Middle, which has the same mascot. Fields says recent events have made her think about what may be best moving forward.

Fields has now signed the petition in favor of changing the name.

“Like a change like this it might not mean much to most of the adults but this is huge for kids because these kids are going to see you know they cared enough,” Fields said.

WSAZ asked the school district for its stance on the issue and the petitions.

Our school district is very mindful of both the diversity of our students and the traditions of our various schools. We strive for a welcoming environment that also fortifies school spirit. Currently the school board, the administration and officials at the school are very much focused on arrangements for educating students in the midst of the pandemic.

Putnam County Schools

The superintendent does not make name changes to schools; however, the superintendent does make recommendations to the Putnam County Board of Education.

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