You may have heard by now that the Pittsfield School Committee has decided to remove “Columbus Day” from the Pittsfield Public Schools Calendar and replace it with “Indigenous People’s Day.” In a story first broke by Marjo Catalano on our sister station, LIVE 95.9 FM, the Pittsfield School Committee, after considering joining a growing number of institutions and organizations across the country in changing the name of the Columbus Day holiday to Indigenous People Day, made it official.

“Columbus Day”, still the official holiday on U.S. Calendars, will continue to be a day off as it has been a recognized federal holiday since 1937, but the wording on the calendar is now instead in celebration of the Native Americans of this country, rather than Christopher Columbus. History has proven that the explorer did not discover the America, and furthermore was not even the first European explorer to make it to these shores.

Residents who were not present at the school committee meeting, in which this decision was made, didn’t get to hear the discussion that led to the eventual calendar change. Some may possibly feel slighted by the decision, maybe seeing the lack of recognition of Christopher Columbus, as an action against their ethnicity.

With the sensitivity of the move in mind, Town Square Media-Berkshire News Director, Tom Conklin, had Pittsfield Superintendent of Schools, Dr. Jake McCandless on his weekly program ‘City Talk’ on Friday to among other things, address this issue.

Have a listen here to what Dr. McCandless had to say on the subject:

The full City Talk program, with Dr. McCandless, re-airs on Sunday morning at 10.


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