In a “Civil Rights Grievance,” members of the community are citing emotional stress and a 2017 Supreme Court decision in an effort to overturn the Teton School Board’s 4-1 decision to retire the Redskin name.
An announcement in the Save the Redskins Facebook group read, “We have drafted a formal Civil Rights Grievance Letter to give to the board and Monte (Woolstenhulme, Superintendent) tonight. If you would like to sign the letter, please meet a the front of the Elementary School between 5:30-6. We want as many signatures as possible before 6pm. We will have a copy of the letter there for you to read as well as one to sign.”
A source close to the petition confirmed its authenticity to the Teton Valley News and said that the document is planned for submission at tonight’s Teton School Board work meeting slated to begin at 6 p.m. at the Driggs Elementary School. This meeting is scheduled to work through a plan to begin the process of retiring the Redskin name from the Teton High School.
The four-page complaint ultimately asked that the school board reinstate the name with, “new standardized Native cultural education to recognize the objective and positive nature of Redskins,” and “requests a temporary hold on the motion to retire the Redskin name so as to not allow the school board to move ahead with changes until this is resolved.”
The grievance states that this is the desire of, “the majority of Teton County students and residents.”
“Since the ruling many students have claimed they will enroll in schools located a minimum of 30 miles away and have sought consolation and understanding from parents, friends, and peers,” reads the grievance. “With the high suicide rate in Teton County Idaho, there is concern that the high anxiety of this decision may lead to adverse consequences.”
The petition held 52 signatures said Superintendent Monte Woolstenhulme after the meeting.