CHAMBERLAIN, S.D. (AP) – The Chamberlain School Board has again rejected a request to include a traditional Lakota honor song in the high school graduation ceremony.
The Daily Republic reports the board voted 4-2 against the song Monday night. One board member abstained.
The controversy first arose last spring, when the school board rejected a request for the honor song. Board members said a feathering ceremony the night before graduation honors tribal students and that commencement should be about recognizing academic achievements rather than cultural ties.
More than one-third of the Chamberlain School District’s 900 students are American Indian.
Board president Rebecca Reimer voted against the song and said the discussion was about “control and power.”
Board member Marcel Felicia voted for the song and says people have told him they support it.
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