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Vivian Riddle Elementary School changes mascot

Published: Jul. 1, 2021 at 7:03 PM EDT
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LANSING, Mich. (WILX) - Some people are in disagreement with the Lansing School District and one of their elementary schools over a recent change.

Vivian Riddle Elementary school has officially taken down all logos of their old mascot called “Little Reds’’ and have a temporary to display their new logo, called the Riddle Rhinos. The principal said this is something that needed to be done.

“This is important because we want to represent our native people in the appropriate way, we want to recognize the contributions they have made to the United States and we are listening to their voice and the vast majority feel that this is something that needs to take place,” said Vivian Riddle Elementary School Principal, Nicole Beard.

The Riddle Elementary School principal told News 10 they did a survey with the community and school to see what people would prefer.

“We’ve had mixed reactions some are really excited about the change there is a lot of nostalgia attached to the Little Reds that was our previous mascot, so there are mixed emotions about that,” Beard said.

Some parents objected to it, but others feel strongly that’s it’s a good change, including the Lansing School District’s new superintendent.

“I just love that they understood it was necessary, it was respectful and the right thing to do, but also coming up with the new mascot name logo it came from the community as well,” said Lansing Schools’ superintendent, Benjamin Shuldiner.

Administrators got the rhino nickname from the potter park zoo’s black rhino calf Jaali, and students quickly latched onto the idea.

“Happy to support the rhinos, the logo is wonderful and cute, but the most important thing that school districts around the country need to recognize that we need to be respectful of all folks and this is one of many things that districts need to work on, so we can make sure that everybody feels comfortable in our district.

The school won’t be able to order new signs with the new mascot until they receive grant money from the Native American heritage fund, which should be coming in the next few weeks.

Riddle is getting a little more than 47,000 dollars to pay for new clothes and logos. The principal plans to have the inside of the school done before classes resume in August. The outdoor signage should be replaced by October.

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