Posted by on Apr 13, 2016 in Featured

WA State Recognizes Right of Native American Students to Wear Eagle Feathers at Graduation Ceremonies

WA State Recognizes Right of Native American Students to Wear Eagle Feathers at Graduation Ceremonies

On Jan. 29, 2016, Washington State Superintendent of Public Instruction Randy Dorn issued a letter to all state superintendents calling on schools to “ensure educational equity and to foster inclusive educational activities for all students and communities” and to specifically call on schools to allow for Native American students to wear Eagle feathers during graduation ceremonies.

The letter states that, ““[T]he eagle feather is a symbol of such high honor in the tribal community…it should not be viewed as a violation of the graduation ceremony dress codes.”

It further states, “Federally recognized tribes in Washington state operate as sovereign nations. The Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction (OSPI) is committed to fostering the vital government-to-government relationships with tribes. OSPI fully supports policies that recognize the tribal student’s ability to honor unique tribal cultures. I am calling on school districts to review current policies and search for inclusive ways the Native students can honor their tribal traditions.”

by Wakíƞyaƞ Waánataƞ (Matt Remle)

Matt Remle (Lakota) is an editor and writer for Last Real Indians and LRInspire. @wakiyan7

Matt Remle (Lakota) is an editor and writer for Last Real Indians and LRInspire. @wakiyan7