CONCORD, Calif. (KRON) — Controversy continues over a proposed mascot change at an East Bay school.
Concord High School is considering retiring its Minutemen Moniker mascot, but some families want to keep it. The group that attended the school district meeting Wednesday night were firm and passionate in their stance that the mascot should stay.
They said the name means something historically and the amount of money it would take to change it is wasteful.
Parents, students and alumni filled the Mount Diablo Unified School board meeting to fight for the Minutemen that they say once fought for them. “I have relatives that were in the Revolutionary War. They would be appalled at the fact that we are losing our heritage,” said Wes Anderson, who supports keeping Minutemen mascot.
A year ago, the district decided to move away from mascots that depicted groups of humans to allow for a safer, more welcoming environment for all students. “You have whole families that identify as Minutemen. You have families who buy a house to continue their legacy there,” said Mark Lloyd, who supports keeping Minutemen mascot.
The current mascot shows a Revolutionary War figure with a rifle. Some said there are adjustments that can be made to make the Minutemen more inclusive. “Remove the musket. Add a woman beside the minuteman. There were women minutemen, and African American minutemen,” said Julie Lyster, Concord High School parent.
Some people are concerned about the cost that will go into changing the current mascot with things such as signs and uniforms needing to be changed and updated. They said that money could be going towards infrastructure or things to make students safer.
“While we’re standing here in a meeting talking about spending millions of dollars on a new mascot, there are students sitting in a classroom planning their moves to escape in case there was an active shooter on campus. I was one of those students,” said Rachel Lloyd, a former Concord High School student.
KRON On is streaming news live now
The group ended their presentation by asking the board to either make modifications to the current mascot or allow students to vote if they want to keep the mascot. Students did vote to replace Minutemen with a Bears mascot, but in that poll keeping Minutemen wasn’t an option.
The board will also hear from Concord High School administration about why they support the change at a board meeting in May. That board meeting, however, has not been finalized.