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Skowhegan school board meeting to cover new mascot process, COVID-19 plans

The MSAD 54 school board is meeting at 7 p.m. on Thursday, August 6 to discuss a series of agenda items before the fall 2020 semester begins.

SKOWHEGAN, Maine — The MSAD 54 school board is meeting the evening of Thursday, August 6 to discuss a number of agenda items before the fall.

According to school board chair Lynda Quinn, this will be the last meeting before students in grades six through 12 are presented with nine new options for a school mascot. The school board is expected to cover how exactly that will happen at Thursday's meeting, but Quinn says she is anticipating students will receive an email asking for their opinions.

Last week, the public learned what options are on the table. They include:

  • The Phoenix
  • Riverhawks
  • Sturgeon
  • Badgers
  • Thunder
  • River Drivers
  • Trailblazers
  • Fishercats
  • Skowhegan

RELATED: Skowhegan has nine options to chose from for its new mascot

Per state guidance, the school board will have the final say in the decision but will use students' responses as guidance. 

Skowhegan has been without a mascot for more than a year, since the school board voted 14 to nine in March of 2019 to retire its original "Indian" mascot and name. The administration originally went through more than 400 responses for a new mascot from the district and beyond via paper forms and digital surveys. Ultimately, the education program/policy committee chose four, and the support services committee chose five to total the nine current options.

RELATED: Skowhegan considers how to approach new school mascot

School board member Jennifer Poirier told NEWS CENTER Maine Wednesday afternoon that other agenda items like COVID-19 re-entry plans will likely get more attention Thursday evening. She says the superintendent and assistant superintendent are expected to present updates about how to re-enter classrooms, what parents should do if they don't want to send their children back, and whether a fall sports season will even be happening. 

Poirier told NEWS CENTER Maine most hope voting on the new school mascot will happen before the school year starts.

RELATED: All 16 Maine counties get initial go-ahead for in-person instruction in schools