Indigenous Educational Resources for Teachers

Beginning your journey to shifting your practice.

2016-2017 Final Report

Biwaase’aa/Maamaawisiiwin Education & Research Innovation

In 2007 the Ministry of Education released the Ontario First Nation, Métis, and Inuit Education Policy Framework (the Framework). In this document, the Government of Ontario promised all Indigenous peoples that their children attending provincially funded schools “will have the traditional and contemporary knowledge, skills, and attitudes required to be socially contributive, politically active, and economically prosperous citizens of the world” (p. 7).

For a generation, Indigenous researchers (Cajete, 1994; Battiste, 2013; Bishop, O’Sullivan & Berryman, 2010; Castellano, Davis, & Lahache, 2000; Hampton, 1995) around the world have found that Indigenous school success generally depend on the successful integration of,

A widespread integration of both knowledge traditions in Ontario schools has yet to be fully realized. In order for the promise to be realized, effective approaches need to be identified and then adapted to other contexts. This report examines two promising initiatives that serve the needs of Indigenous students in Thunder Bay schools.

Read the full report in PDF format.

Anishininiiwi Awaashishiiw Kihkinohamaakewi Niikaanihtamaakew

Indigenous Early Childhood Education Professional Development Program Summative Research Report

The Education Reality in Northwestern Ontario

There are seventy-seven First Nation communities in Northwestern Ontario with a total population of approximately 40,307 citizens. According to the 2016 Census, forty-one percent of that population in the age group 0 to 19 years (N=16,471) only thirty-five percent had a high school diploma or equivalent.

Projecting the thirty-five percent graduation rate across the total 0 to 19 age group in those communities would mean that some 5,765 had not completed high school.

These communities are culturally, linguistically, as well as historically diverse with equally diverse aspirations for the future. Unaddressed, the potential of thirty-five percent of the current generation of the population not completing high school and the potential trauma that reality represents compounds the intergenerational trauma, as well as erodes the future human resource so desperately needed to continue the momentum of self-determination. What should be equally clear is that maintaining the status quo is not only untenable, but is tantamount to a cultural genocide.

Overcoming the status quo will require enacting sweeping innovation at all levels of education which will in turn, necessitate in-service educators acquiring new skill-sets.

Envisioning an Educational Innovation

For almost a decade Oshki-Pimache-O-Win: The Wenjack Education Institute, has offered an Early Childhood Education Program that has accredited numerous Indigenous Early Childhood Educators, many currently employed in First Nation early learning centres across Northwestern Ontario.

The development of Oshki-Wenjack’s In-Service Indigenous Early Childhood Education Professional Development Program was a strategic innovation that began in 2017. Concerned with their ongoing professional development needs, the 2017 graduating IECE class and alumni came together in a Needs Assessment Talking Circle, sponsored by Oshki-Wenjack.

The summative research report presents the results of that two-year educational innovation designed to increase the leadership capacities of Indigenous and non-Indigenous Early Childhood Educators working in a First Nation and Indigenous urban context in Northwestern Ontario, Anishinabek territory.

Read the full report in PDF format.