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Tribal Honor Song Issue Arises Again in Chamberlain School

Native Americans
David McNew/Getty Images

CHAMBERLAIN, S.D. (AP) — School officials in the southeastern South Dakota city of Chamberlain are set to decide next month whether to include an American Indian honor song at future graduation ceremonies.

The controversy arose last spring, when the school board rejected a request for a Lakota honor song. Board members said a feathering ceremony the night before graduation honors tribal students and that the commencement exercise should be about recognizing academic achievements rather than cultural ties.

The Argus Leader newspaper reports (http://argusne.ws/1ghRovW ) that the issue arose again at a contentious board meeting this week, and the board scheduled a Dec. 9 vote.

More than one-third of the Chamberlain School District’s 900 students are American Indian.

Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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