Mascots enter the race for Wisconsin Superintendent of Public Instruction

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March 28, 2013

 Candidates for Superintendent of Public Instruction 

By Greg Janetka

MADISON, Wisconsin: With less than a week to go until the election for Wisconsin Superintendent of Public Instruction, challenger and state Rep. Don Pridemore volleyed with a press release on school mascots, vowing to eliminate the department's current policy.

Per state law, the Department of Public Instruction (DPI) is authorized to force schools to change mascots if a complaint is filed and the mascot in question is determined to be discriminatory. The dispute stems from the Mukwonago Area School District's Indian mascot. Parents in the area have sought to have DPI's policy declared unconstitutional.[1]

Entering the debate, Pridemore made his position clear, stating:[2]

"Under my leadership, DPI will not force policy onto the school districts where one bureaucrat has sole power to determine the fate of a school mascot. This policy does not consider community standards, traditions or cost. Having one person to make a decision does not allow for due process or a public hearing. In my opinion it is unconstitutional and a great example of a bureaucracy that’s out of control."

Incumbent state superintendent Tony Evers had no immediate comment.

The general election took place April 2, 2013.

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