Cherokee Nation considers cutting school funds over policies

TULSA, Okla. (AP) – The Cherokee Nation Tribal Council is considering whether the tribe should cut funding to schools that bar Native American students from observing cultural practices during events.

The Tulsa World reports the council’s Rules Committee approved the proposal during a meeting on Oct. 31.

Cherokee Nation Deputy Attorney General Chrissi Nimmo says the measure seeks to address a “recurring issue” of reports of schools trying to impose restrictions on students’ hair length. Nimmo added schools also prohibit students from wearing eagle feathers on their caps during graduations.

She noted Native Americans use eagle feathers to symbolize noteworthy achievements. She also said there are often “very significant cultural and religious implications” linked to hair treatment.

The Tribal Council is scheduled to discuss the proposal during a meeting next week.

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