Indigenous Top Ten News

Mar 09, 2022 • ON

The Government of Ontario has announced that it will be increasing nursing and personal support worker (PSW) program enrolment at six Indigenous institutes with a $34M investment. The Anishinabek Educational Institute, First Nations Technical Institute, Kenjgewin Teg, Oshki-Pimache-O-Win: The Wenjack Education Institute, Seven Generations Education Institute, and Six Nations Polytechnic will receive funding over four years to provide culturally responsive education and training pathways to learners. The funding will also support program development and expansion, student subsidies, and the enhancement of Indigenous knowledge and language. “Indigenous Institutes have unique capacities to provide pathways to health care education that link our learners to community health care employers,” said SNP President Rebecca Jamieson. “This funding is critically important as we collectively work to recover from a global pandemic while continuing to create positive paths forward from our collective experience of inter-generational trauma and loss of language and culture.”

ON

Indigenous Top Ten News

Mar 09, 2022 • MB

The Southern Chiefs’ Organization (SCO) has partnered with the Winnipeg School Division (WSD) to launch the Jordan’s Principle coordinator position. Indigenous Elder Stan Kipling (Blue Star) of the Peguis First Nation will hold in the position and will support learners by addressing gaps, racism, and policies that lead to low graduation rates for Indigenous students. Kipling will work with the 79 schools and the division office. “The most important thing is for students to have balance — social, emotional, physical and spiritual well-being,” said WSD Director of Indigenous Education Rob Riel. “When students are in balance, the indicators that we would shoot for (engagement, attendance, credit attainment, and graduation) will all come into play.”

Winnipeg Free Press, Wellington School

Indigenous Top Ten News

Mar 09, 2022 • NT

Several communities are embarking on and celebrating new literacy supports. On Vancouver Island, Innovations for Learning, SD72, and the Campbell River Literacy Association have started a program at Ripple Rock Elementary to help kids develop literacy. IFL executive director Fabrice Grover stated that the program could provide an opportunity for language revitalization and reconciliation, as many of the schools they work with are Indigenous or near Indigenous reserves. My Comox Valley Now says that the Tla-o-qui-aht First Nation in Tofino has signed on with the program and that the Cowichan Tribes may see the program in the fall. In Yellowknife, the Literacy Outreach Centre is offering classes for adults who want to improve their literacy skills. The Centre has partnered with Inclusion NWT and Aurora College to provide free programming including family literacy, computer classes, office skills, and a tutoring program.

CBC (Literacy Outreach Centre), My Comox Valley Now (BC, NWT)

Indigenous Top Ten News

Mar 09, 2022 • ON

The University of Toronto will be establishing a new chair in Indigenous law, thanks to a $2M endowed gift from alumni Norman and Gay Loveland. The Loveland Chair in Indigenous Law will advance the law school’s Indigenous law research and education priorities. “The Loveland’s commitment to Indigenous law students and Indigenous scholarship is inspiring,” said U of T Dean Jutta Brunnée. “Further expanding our robust expertise and course offerings is a top academic priority, and with the Loveland’s generous gift we will accelerate our teaching and scholarship in Indigenous law.” The institution also recently received a $500K gift from alumnus Howard Levitt, which was matched by U of T to create a $1M expendable fund to support co- and extra-curricular programming led by the Indigenous Initiatives Office at U of T Law.

U of T

Indigenous Top Ten News

Mar 09, 2022 • BC

The Songhees Nation and the Greater Victoria Teachers’ Association are speaking out after two Greater Victoria School District (GVSD) trustees were censured and suspended until the next school board elections. The two trustees allegedly made disparaging comments in public, which were substantiated by a lawyer/mediator who conducted a third-party investigation. The Songhees Nation released a statement questioning the trustees’ suspension, noting that there was no due process or transparency. They also pointed to previous issues with the board. The Songhees Nation is calling for the resignation of the entire board, has boycotted all GVSD meetings, and has requested a full account of the process leading to suspension of the trustees. The trustees Diane McNally and Rob Paynter have also filed petitions with the BC Supreme court.

Times Colonist, I Heart Radio, CHEK News

Indigenous Top Ten News

Mar 09, 2022 • National

In a recent article from University Affairs, Matthew Halliday discusses the process and inspiration behind creating the National Indigenous University Senior Leaders Association (NIUSLA). Halliday says that the isolation felt during the early days of the pandemic inspired First Nations University President Jacqueline Ottmann, a Salteaux who previously worked at the University of Saskatchewan, and Michael Hart, vice-provost of Indigenous engagement at the University of Calgary, to discuss the creation of an association that would unite senior Indigenous administrators at institutions across Canada and drive systemic change. NIUSLA unites Indigenous leadership at 29 universities and seeks to address the need for real support for Indigenous administrators, expand its membership, and address Indigenous identity fraud. “[Our] diversity is vast, as is the distance between us,” said Ottmann. “This can be seen as a limitation, but I see it as strength.”

University Affairs

Indigenous Top Ten News

Mar 09, 2022 • BC, ON

The Government of British Columbia has announced that it is implementing a new Indigenous-focused coursework requirement for graduation from high school. Starting in September 2023, students will be required to take Indigenous-focused coursework to help strengthen their understanding of the histories and knowledges of Indigenous people. “Building awareness and understanding of First Peoples’ perspectives, cultures and histories among all B.C. students will serve as an important step toward reconciliation and an effective strategy to combat racism within the province to the benefit of all British Columbians,” said First Nations Education Steering Committee President Tyrone McNeil. The York Region District School Board also recently announced that it will be requiring students to take the Understanding Contemporary First Nations, Métis, and Inuit Voices as their Grade 11 English credit starting in the 2023-24 school year.

BC, Chek Watch Local, Newmarket Today

Indigenous Top Ten News

Mar 09, 2022 • National

Postsecondary institutions and high schools across Canada have recently introduced or installed Indigenous artwork on campus. Nova Scotia Community College graduate Riki Lee Christmas of the Eskasoni First Nation has designed a turtle symbol which will be used to mark over 1,500 Mi’kmaw and Indigenous books at all NSCC campuses. At Brandon University, a new sculpture by faculty member and Cree/Métis sculptor Kevin McKenzie has been commissioned as a way to move BrandonU’s commitment to reconciliation forward. Keyano College has revealed its new jerseys for the Keyano Huskies, which were designed by Denésoliné artist Emma Voyageur of the Athabasca First Nation. Three jerseys were designed, each of which features a landscape that symbolizes connection and empowerment. In Grande Prairie, the Indigenous Student Council at Beaverlodge Regional High School has finalized plans for a mural that will represent various Indigenous groups in Canada. Emily Carr University of Art and Design received a new totem pole named “Northern Wolves” that brings together the skills of Tahltan-Tlingit master carvers Dempsey Bob and Stan Bevan and Māori carver Lyonel Grant. ECUAD will also soon feature a house post designed by master carver Xwalacktun, who is of Squamish and Kwakwak’wakw ancestry.

CBC (NSCC), Brandon U, ECUAD (1), ECUAD (2), Keyano, Everything GP

Indigenous Top Ten News

Mar 09, 2022 • ON

The First Nations Technical Institute has lost its hangar structure and equipment after a massive structural fire late last week. No staff or students were harmed by the fire, but FNTI lost its entire fleet of 13 aircraft, five of which had been purchased recently, as well as its maintenance operations office and equipment for servicing the planes. The estimated damage is in the tens of millions of dollars. Buildings that were adjacent to the hangar have been impacted by the heat, but FNTI says that they did not experience serious damage. “We had to first grieve our loss. We’ve had some condolence ceremonies conducted by Elders, just so we can accept what happened and we’re ready to move on,” said Jo-Anne Tabobandung, FNTI’s dean of aviation. “In the interim, we’re trying to get some of the students moving ahead with their training. We have reached out, and we have students flying right now actually. They’re set up in Cornwall and Kingston, they’ve offered to help support some of our students and our training.” Global News reports that FNTI plans to rebuild the hanger.

FNTI, Quinte News, Skies Mag, Global News

Indigenous Top Ten News

Mar 09, 2022 • ON

Two communities in Ontario are celebrating good news related to childcare and early childhood education. Ginoogaming First Nation has announced that it has opened the Aboriginal Head Start on Reserve (AHSOR) facility for children from birth to six years old. The new facility will allow the First Nation to expand its childcare spaces to up to 71 children, and will provide space for children to enjoy traditionally prepared wild foods, learn legends, and have visits from Elders. “We know how crucial it is to support our children and youth with education programs and facilities,” said Ginoogaming First Nation Chief Sheri Taylor. “As we continue to look at ways to reduce the gap in First Nation infrastructure for our community, this marks the first of many projects we hope to get under way for Ginoogaming First Nation.” Meanwhile, in Sault St Marie, the Northern Ontario Heritage Fund Corp has announced that it will be providing $1M to the Ontario Aboriginal Housing Services (OAHS) and Waabinong Head Start Family Resource Centre to build a childcare facility that will promote the Anishinaabek culture and language.

Nation Talk (Ginoogaming First Nation), Nation Talk (OAHS)