Resolution on Culturally Insensitive Names, Symbols and Mascots

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Notes from the Backpack Podcast

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Whereas, Currently, at least 110 public K-12 educational facilities and buildings are named after Confederate soldiers, leaders and politicians, even though more than half of the 125,000 students who attend these educational facilities and buildings are non-white. Also, in this country, there are more than 2,000 professional, college, and high school teams with Native American names and mascots; and

Whereas, The use of racially derogatory or culturally insensitive names, mascots or symbols in our public educational facilities and buildings and for teams violates not only the Department of Education’s obligation to provide all students with an equitable education, but also Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964; and

Whereas, An often-overlooked component is the impact that educational facilities and buildings or team names, mascots or symbols have on the school culture, which shapes the identities of students, teachers, and their communities. Culturally insensitive memorialization normalizes stereotypes and reinforces systemic racism, thereby producing toxic learning environments for students and educators which can lead to inequitable outcomes; and

Whereas, Because educational facilities and buildings’ names, symbols and mascots reflect the values of their community, it is imperative to engage all stakeholders in the renaming process, especially those populations whose presence in history has been marginalized and/or disrespected; therefore, be it

Resolved, That National PTA and its constituent associations call for and support the renaming of educational facilities and buildings and/or team names and replacement of symbols and mascots which are culturally insensitive; and be it further

Resolved, That National PTA and its constituent associations advocate for community and stakeholder input in the renaming and replacement process.

Adopted: by the 2021 Convention Delegates