Wis. Senate set to take up school mascots bill

CREATED Nov. 4, 2013

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MADISON, Wis. (AP) -- The Wisconsin Senate is set to consider a Republican bill this week that would make it harder to force public schools to drop American Indian nicknames and logos.

Currently the Department of Public Instruction must hold a hearing on a school's race-based nickname if the agency receives a single complaint. The school must prove the nickname doesn't promote discrimination at a hearing. DPI then decides whether the name must go.

The bill would require a complainant to collect signatures equal to 10 percent of the school district's population to trigger a review. The complainant would have to prove discrimination to the Department of Administration, not DPI.

Senate Majority Leader Scott Fitzgerald says the chamber will take up the bill Tuesday. The Assembly passed the measure last month.