BEMIDJI (AP) -- The Win-E-Mac School District has filed a report with the U.S. Department of Education that will likely end an investigation into alleged racism at a pep rally.
The department will review the report, filed last week, to guarantee that the district has completed five courses of action outlined in a resolution agreement. The review could take up to a month.
"Generally, when they get down to that last reporting period, we find that they've adhered to all the elements of that agreement," said Roger Murphy, a spokesman for the Education Department's Office for Civil Rights.
"And then we close the case out and it's all wrapped up."
Deanne Fox, who is American Indian, filed a civil rights complaint in April saying that her two sons, who were enrolled in the district, were assaulted by other students after the rally.
The rally was held at the high school in Erskine to get students excited for a sectional basketball game against the Red Lake Warriors, a team from the Red Lake Indian Reservation.
During the rally, several teachers dressed as stereotypical American Indians and danced to a "tom-tom" beat. Dressed as a cowboy, another teacher put his hands on holstered toy pistols and told the Indians to "get back to the reservation."
Win-E-Mac is a consolidated school district that includes Winger, Erskine and McIntosh, about 50 miles west of Bemidji. The rally took place at the district's high school in Erskine.
The agreement between the district and the Education Department -- through five courses of action -- essentially required the school district to provide cultural awareness training for its staff and students.
Superintendent Gail Sells said in December that much of what the school had to do to satisfy the resolution agreement already had been planned as part of the district's cultural awareness curriculum.
At that time, the district also released a statement depicting a cultural awareness session it sponsored for students and staff, one of the agreement's requirements.
"The presentation was designed to increase the students' understanding of persons from diverse cultural backgrounds, generally, and Native Americans, specifically," Sells said.
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