hs elem

In light of the recent legal decision, the November 17, 2022 memo from the New York State Education Department did not come as a surprise to us.  Of course, the Candor Central School District is aware that people see the use of Native American imagery as a school logo from many different points of view.  Some people find the use of Native American imagery as insensitive and offensive.  Candor CSD adopted an Indian logo as a point identification decades ago.  There is no doubt that the logo was originally chosen out of respect and admiration for the indigenous Americans.  For generations our students have represented Candor very well under our Indian logo.  Over time the symbol has become a point of identity and pride for many in our school and community.  A change in our logo or mascot will not change the pride that we have in our students and community.  Candor will still be Candor: a great place to live and raise a family.  The school board and administration are committed to addressing the change in a thoughtful and respectful way.


Our Athletic Director, Holly Carling, is heading up a committee consisting of 38 people including students, alumni, Board members, longtime residents of Candor, community business, and civic leaders, faculty, and staff to examine the issues and make recommendations.  Other community members are invited to share their opinions and feelings with the committee by emailing Holly Carling at hcarling@candorcs.org with “Mascot” in the subject line.


The committee first met on February 3rd.  There were great discussions around what our mascot does for our school and community.  The committee identified the characteristics that best represent Candor and that we are most proud of.  Other considerations such as; do we want to have a unique mascot in Section IV, do we want our new mascot to be locally connected and do we want to be represented by an animal, an object, or "thing" were discussed.  There was wide agreement that Candor’s colors will remain blue & white.


We are excited about what we have planned in March.  A follow-up committee meeting is scheduled for March 7th.  On March 16th, acclaimed Oneida educator, counselor, and artist, Diane Shenandoah, will visit Candor CSD with members of her family to give two presentations, one for the Elementary students and staff and then a second one for the Jr/Sr. High School students, staff and the Mascot-committee.  Ms. Schenandoah’s mother was a Clan Mother of Oneida Nation’s Wolf Clan and her father was an Onondaga Nation Chief. We feel very fortunate that she is able to come to our community and provide us with insights and a greater understanding of Indigenous culture.  Additional committee meetings will be scheduled as needed and the committee will make a recommendation to the Board of Education before the end of this school year.


Candor has always put a high value on education. This change has given us an opportunity to increase our awareness of Indigenous culture and to gain a better understanding of the contributions that Indigenous people have made to our community.   Many people are unaware that the birth of democracy was here, in this region of the country where the Haudenosaunee made their home.  When the United States government was newly forming, revolutionary leaders fashioned our government after the Haudenosaunee Confederacy.  It has been with respect for Native Americans that we have identified ourselves as Candor “Indians”.  Gaining deeper understandings and looking at our mascot from different points of view, will help us continue to see our history with pride, while we move forward with a new mascot that will serve our school and community well, hopefully for generations to come.   

Brent Suddaby
Superintendent of Schools