Board votes to change Concord High School's mascot to be more inclusive

ByTim Johns KGO logo
Friday, August 18, 2023
Board votes to change Concord High School's mascot
The Mount Diablo Unified School District voted to approve a new mascot for Concord High School, changing from the "Minutemen" to the "Bears."

CONCORD, Calif. (KGO) -- The Concord High "Minutemen" are no more. By a vote of four to one, the board of the Mount Diablo Unified School District voting Wednesday to approve a new mascot for the school.

Starting next year, they'll become the "Bears."

"What I support is making sure that our students feel connected to our school, that students have a voice and that students go through a process," said Adam Clark.

Clark is the superintendent of the district. He says discussions over the change have been happening for years - after the district decided to replace human mascots with non-human ones.

The goal was to make them more inclusive.

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"It's time for new attitudes. And if changing a mascot will make students feel welcome, embraced and empowers them to participate more at their school then I will support this," said Linda Mayo, one of the members of the district's board.

One of the concerns among those who called for change is the minuteman holding a musket - at a time where school shootings are top of mind for many students.

Other issues come from the use of the word "men."

"With the term 'men,' then what about our female students? You know they're not represented," Clark said.

Not everyone agrees with the change, though.

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Matthew Dashner is a recent graduate, who was on a student committee involved in the mascot change.

He says even though the student body voted to become bears, he believes that was only because the status quo wasn't an option.

"They never asked us if we liked our current mascot or if we wanted to change it. We were just told that it had to change," Dashner said.

The cost to change the mascot is estimated to be around $200,000.

Money that Dashner believes could be better spent improving student life in other ways.

"It's kind of the identity of our teams. We fight, we fight even when we're down and the odds are stacked against us. We keep going. Like how our country was created, the minutemen," he said.

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