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Informational Update: ARHS Mascot 04/29/2021

Thursday, April 29, 2021


Dear Parent(s) and Guardian(s):


At the April 28, 2021, Northborough-Southborough Regional School Committee meeting, the Committee voted by a unanimous vote by the members present to retire the Tomahawk as the mascot of Algonquin Regional High School (ARHS). The Committee collectively felt that ignoring the clear and vocal opposition of Native American communities to the continued use of Native American mascots, symbols, and nicknames is not aligned with Algonquin Regional High School’s values. Continuing the use of the Tomahawk as the ARHS mascot reinforces negative stereotypes that overshadow past and present contributions, perspectives, and struggles of Native American people. 


For many members of the ARHS community, including alumni, this change will be experienced as a loss. Many have shared the opinion that the Tomahawk was never intended to disrespect Native American peoples. On this point, there is clear agreement; the intent of the image has never been in question, however, we now know more about the impact that the image may have on our Native American students as well as our students from other historically marginalized groups. We recognize that the memories and successes associated with the Tomahawk are positive and valued by some former and current students, and we look forward to continuing to support their success with a new mascot.


The Committee voted to establish a Renaming Study Group in the near future to engage the community in choosing a new mascot, which will serve to unify Algonquin students and families in ways that are consistent with the purpose of an institution’s mascot. The full School Committee Motion can be viewed here.


Algonquin Regional High School will continue to be a leader in academics, athletics, and the fine and performing arts. As we look to the current and future generations of ARHS students, we are confident that they will develop as local and global citizens who demonstrate the District’s core values: Integrity, Empathy, Inclusivity, Equity, Perseverance, and Respect.




Gregory L. Martineau

Superintendent of Schools


Joan G. Frank

Northborough-Southborough Regional School Committee Chair


Sean A. Bevan

Algonquin Regional High School Principal