Could Roseburg High School lose the 'Indian?'

Could Roseburg High School lose the 'Indian?'
The Roseburg High School marching band performs on the football field. A meeting this week by the state board of education may lead to Roseburg being forced to change the mascot

ROSEBURG, Ore. -- The Roseburg High School mascot could be in jeopardy yet again.

The Oregon Board of Education will be discussing school mascots with Native American names this week.

That discussion includes the Roseburg Indians, along with the North Douglas Warriors and the Reedsport Braves.

Though the school's mascot name is "the Indians," the logo is a picture of a feather.

Roseburg Superintendent Larry Parsons told the Oregonian that residents are, "proud to be Roseburg Indians. Changing the mascot would be a difficult thing to do in this community."

Roseburg is one of 16 schools in the state with mascots that could be in jeopardy.

Susan Ferris, spokesperson for the Cow Creek Band of the Umpqua Tribe of Indians, says that the school and the tribe have a good relationship and a mutual respect.

Oregon Department of Education Communication Director Christine Miles told KPIC News that this is an issue that's been important to the state superintendent.

Miles says they're looking at the issue because new research from the American Sociological Association shows the use of Native American images as mascots is not healthy for children.

The Board of Education will be discussing the mascots in question this Thursday and Friday in Salem, during a session that is open to the public.

There is also the question of cost: At a time when schools are struggling to make ends meet, a mascot change could be an incredibly costly move.

Uniforms, logos throughout school buildings and signs would all have to be changed, and school districts already burdened financially could have to foot the bill.

This is a developing story, Stay tuned throughout the day to this Web site and our TV affiliates for more information.