(AP) The Chikkewas School for the Deaf is one of the largest high schools in Wyoming, serving nearly 500 students, including many from rural communities.
But the Chippees, who have been a prominent force in the fight for equal rights in the state, have also been a focus of anger from some members of the Wyoming community who have called them a hate group and called for them to be expelled.
The Chippe Schools was founded in 1902 and has a long history of educating students with special needs.
It is home to Chippeena School for deaf children and is a leader in the advocacy for equality for people with disabilities.
Some people also feel the school is not doing enough to support students with learning disabilities and that some of its policies discriminate against them, according to a recent complaint from the Chilkoot Indian Tribe.
The tribe, which is located about 45 miles (64 kilometers) west of the state’s capital, has been trying to have the school removed from public school records for the last three years.
The Chilkoots and the school district have both denied the allegations.
The school district says it has received more than 200 complaints from residents of Chilkooch, including accusations of discrimination and bullying.
In a statement, the Chikkee School district says: “We respect and value all people, and our school strives to serve all students regardless of race, creed, ethnicity, religion, gender identity, sexual orientation, gender expression, marital status, national origin, disability, marital and veteran status.”
The Chilkoos have been asking for the school to be moved to a different school district for several years, but it hasn’t been a priority.
They also want to change the curriculum to address issues with students with disabilities and have asked the Chukchuck Nation, the reservation where the school sits, to provide financial support to pay for it.
They also want the school moved to the U.S. reservation, where it is based, and for the Chilcotin Indians to move out of Chippie and move to Chikkooch.