SM North’s Indian mascot is going — now the school wants input on what will replace it

A sign showing the Shawnee Mission North High School Indian mascot

Shawnee Mission will replace the Indian as the mascot for SM North High School with a survey and a mascot application process. File photo.

Shawnee Mission North High School has outlined a process for selecting a new mascot by the end of this school year.

The district’s oldest high school will go through a months-long process to find a new mascot after the board found the Indian non-compliant with its newly adopted policy. File photo.

The nearly 100-year-old high school needs to retire its Indian mascot after the SMSD school board on Monday approved a new mascot policy that, in part, requires that mascots are not “derogatory or offensive to a person or class of persons.”

The board said four schools using either “Indians” or “Braves” as mascots would have to retire those mascots and adopt new ones.

SM North’s timeline

SM North appears to be the first school to take action following the board’s decision.

A survey soliciting community feedback will go out Thursday, Jan. 28, to kick-off the process.

Included in the timeline are ways for students, staff and the SM North community to provide feedback and ideas for a new mascot.

Below is the timeline, which is subject to change, as tweeted out by SM North:

  • Jan. 28 to Feb. 3: A thought exchange survey will be used to collect data from students, parents and the community about SM North’s core values “and how those should be reflected in the new mascot.”
  • Feb. 5: The results from the thought exchange survey will be made public. The mascot application process opens, and applications are sent to current students, staff, parents and feeder-school principals (such as Hocker Grove Middle School). An application link will also be available on social media and SM North’s home page.
  • March 5: Mascot applications are due by 3 p.m.
  • March 6 to March 12: SM North administration will review the submitted applications, and any applications that are found to be non-compliant with the district’s new policy will be removed from consideration.
  • March 13 to April 9: Administration, student leadership and site council will review the remaining submitted applications. Each person will submit a mascot performance form.
  • April 10 to April 18: Administration will use the completed performance forms to calculate the top three finalists. The calculation will use the ratings and associated point values from the performance forms.
  • April 19 to April 23: A final vote for the new mascot will take place via Google Forms. It will be open to all current students, staff and feeder students in fourth to eighth grades.
  • April 26: Administration will recommend a new mascot to Superintendent Mike Fulton.
  • April or May 2021 (to be determined): The new mascot is publicly announced.
  • June 2021: SM North officially retires the Indian mascot.

SM North will be in transition for the 2021 to 2022 school year to work on new branding, logos, uniforms and other signage. While some uniforms and other items will still have the Indian mascot, the new mascot can be used occasionally. By August 2022, SM North will have a new, fully-implemented mascot.