At a time when schools should be concentrating on preparing for the coming school year — a school year in the time of COVID-19 and where teachers are shifting their paradigm from face-to-face teaching to online only — the Mammoth-San Manuel School District is coming under fire for a dumpster full of trophies.
On Monday, Aug. 3, photos and comments began flooding Facebook and NextDoor of a dumpster full of school trophies.
Randall Yubeta, a member of the Class of 2006, emailed the members of the school board and San Manuel Miner to voice his outrage at the sight of so many trophies being discarded.
“There is absolutely no excuse for this type of disregard for the hard work that thousands of alumni have put in not only in the classroom but the fields and areas of competition that these trophies represent,” Yubeta wrote in his email.
The trophies were located in a commercial Waste Management dumpster on school property.
According to a post on the school district’s Facebook page, “There was a recent upset in the community due to trophies being found in the dumpster. When it was brought to the administration’s attention, the trophies were retrieved and are now in storage. The trophy cases in the gym were cleaned and the plan was to make them look more presentable. They now house our many championship trophies so that they can be seen. This should have never occurred and we apologize for upsetting the community over this matter. Administration will look further into this matter and deal with any disciplinary action that should occur.”
The district’s initial plan was to photograph the trophies for older invitationals and tournaments and then offer the trophies to alumni.
In an email to the San Manuel Miner, Julie Dale-Scott, Superintendent of the Mammoth-San Manuel School District said:
“The circumstances that occurred with the Miner trophies is a misunderstanding. It was not something that was planned or directed. I realize that the Mammoth-San Manuel community is one that has had a lot of loss, to start with its copper mine and on to several schools and business closures. It therefore is disturbing that this event has even occurred.
“The actual intent, was to showcase the achievements that created our Miner pride. Currently, the trophy cases in the gym highlight our achievements over the last 67 years in each sport and our hope is that we can add more eventually. We are very proud of all Miners and realize as educators that not everyone is a bookworm and each of our Miner family has a different talent. Athletics is a bridge to education for some students. Students try harder in their academics because they really want to be on the field or court. Athletics build confidence and the right coaching can create opportunities. Some of our athletes have gone on to play in college, the semipros, and even on professional teams. We are very proud that they call themselves a Miner.
“My hope after retrieving those trophies is to work with our community members to not only find a way to treasure those trophies, but continue to build on our Miner pride. We need to honor the past and allow our young students that continue through our small school to feel what Miner pride is as well by adding new memories.”