DeKalb County school board approves changing Cross Key's 'unacceptable' mascot

A DeKalb County high school is getting a new mascot after school officials said the former name could be deemed offensive to some groups.

Cross Keys High School will now be home to the Phoenix.

The DeKalb County School Board approved the mascot change at a meeting on Monday.

In a letter to the board, the school district's Chief Equity Officer Triscilla Weaver said that students, staff, parents and alumni expressed concerns about the previous mascot, which was the "Indians."

Weaver wrote that the earlier mascot was "an inaccurate and unacceptable name for Indigenous people" and that it "can lead to offensive stereotypes."

She also pointed out that roughly 90% of the school's students are Hispanic, and the translation of the word "Indian" is "problematic in some Spanish dialects."

The process to change the mascot has been ongoing since April 2023. Weaver says focus group testing showed a "strong community interest" in renaming the mascot.

After multiple committee meetings, the top three names were selected, and the Phoenix was picked via a vote.