LAMAR, Colo. (KDVR) –The Lamar School District voted to remove the word savage from its proposed mascot name “Savage Thunder” after the Colorado Commission of Indian Affairs’ decision to not approve the name change.

The school board acted Thursday after the commission told the district the word “savage” was associated with American Indians being treated as “uncivilized” or “second class citizens.”

Lamar High School’s 450 students will now use the “Lamar Thunder” as their mascot.

Chad Krug, Lamar School District’s Superintendent told the Problem Solvers the school estimates it will cost around $350,000 to change the mascot, including a new gym floor.

District leaders said it will work to meet the law’s requirements and start removing the old mascot after the school year ends May 24. Colorado lawmakers passed SB21-116 last year which prohibits public schools from using Native American mascots.

CCIA voted May 19 to take 11 schools from across the state off the noncompliance list after the schools shared plans to retire mascots or establish and affirm partnerships and relationships with tribes.

The commission also added several schools with the mascot “Thunderbirds,” to the list which commission members said refers to a mythical bird.  These schools will get a year to change their mascot and avoid possible fines.