WEST HARTFORD, Conn. (WTNH) – The debate over the mascots of two West Hartford high schools is set to be held in court on Thursday.
Last month, the West Hartford Board of Education approved a mascot change in their school to avoid offending Native Americans, but now, they are facing a lawsuit to stop the transition.
Conard and Hall High Schools were formally the Warriors and Chieftans, but seven years ago, the Boards of Education began the process of finding new titles that were considered less offensive. Though they had long ago stopped using Native American imagery, the old names had remained intact for years.
So, board members voted for new mascots and team names. They decided on the Conard Red Wolves and the Hall Titans, which would take effect this summer with new signs and logos at the schools.
However last month, two vocal opponents to the change filed a lawsuit against the Boards of Education. It claimed that the schools violated “policy, law and due process” when it voted to change the mascots. The suit also stated the Board held the vote without following procedural rules, providing public notice, and seeking input from residents.
The opponents filing the suit said they tried to have a judge issue a temporary injunction to stop the district from changing anything until Thursday’s hearing, but the judge did not agree to it.
Because of this, the schools have continued to re-paint their gym floors and change their football fields before school begins in August.
Depending on Thursday’s virtual hearing, a judge could order all of this to end. News 8 will follow this story and continue to update it as soon as a verdict is made.