Job Readiness Skills Training Program
Sponsored by Equay-wuk (Women's Group)
Equay-wuk is offering a 22 week Job Readiness Skills Training Program starting September 4, 2007 to February 1, 2008.
Mail, fax or drop off your resume or letter of interest to:
Job Readiness Skills Training Program
Equay-wuk (Women's Group)
16 Fourth Avenue
P.O. Box 1781
Sioux Lookout, ON P8T 1C4
Toll Free: 1-800-261-8294
Phone: (807) 737-2214
Fax: (807) 737-2699
Application Deadline: August 24, 2007 at 3:00 pm
My name is Kelli Fraser and I am the communications officer at a national charity called “The Society for Educational Visits and Exchanges in Canada”…otherwise known more simply as “SEVEC”!
For 70 years we’ve offered exchange programs for students within Canada to travel to another province or territory for one week to learn about another culture and language. All exchanges are for groups of students between the ages of 12-17 years old.
We currently have openings for groups of Aboriginal students accompanied by one adult to participate in our Aboriginal Exchange Program this school year.
The group can go on exchange anytime during the school year, but applications should be received on our Website by October 1st. If you know of any groups interested in this, please let them know. The adult taking care of the group can apply right online at www.sevec.ca. It’s not necessary to know exact names of students at this point, we just need to know approximately how many students you think you will take on exchange and what you’d like to get out of the exchange.
Another important point: SEVEC, through government funding, pays for the students’ travel. We also have bursaries to help cover other costs.
You can apply just as a group or if you know another group in Canada with whom you’d like to do a 1-week exchange you can apply together.
For more info, visit www.sevec.ca or call me (Kelli) at 1-800.38.SEVEC at extension 205.
I am also sending you an e-mail ad (see below) that you can forward to any groups you know who might want to go on an exchange.
Thanks and best wishes,
Communications Officer / Agente des communications
Celebrating 70 Years of Exchanges! Célébrons 70 ans d’échanges!
( 613.72.SEVEC (613.727.3832) X 205 / 1 800 38.SEVEC 7 613.727.3831 www.sevec.ca
Kash plan addresses classroom shortage - New school to house all students
Scott Paradis - August 09, 2007
Kashechewan could have enough classrooms to accommodate all of its children this fall - a luxury the First Nation hasn't enjoyed in two years.
The $200-million federal government deal for Kashechewan will provide it with a new school.
In the meantime, Indian and Northern Affairs Canada (INAC) intends to provide the First Nation with space to address its current classroom shortage.
"We are working with the community to provide it with portables," said Joe Young, a director of funding services for INAC.
Those portables would be serving a community that hasn't produced a high school graduate on its own soil in about two years.
INAC officials elaborated on details about the school, among other things, in Kashechewan Wednesday afternoon during a special media phone briefing.
That briefing intended to give reporters - who have long tracked the plight of Kashechewan's "historical background" - information along with any possible "next steps," said INAC representative Bob Howsam.
One of those next steps is to build an all-in-one elementary and high school for the community.
More than two years ago, Kashechewan's elementary school was condemned due to toxic mould, among other issues. Any belief that the school would be re-opened went up in smoke, literally, when a fire ripped through the building in late June.
Since the originally condemning of that school, elementary students have been sharing the high school facilities.
The students now go to school in shifts - elementary school students hit the books in the morning while high school students attend later in the afternoon and into the evening.
INAC said it is working with the community to ensure that when the school is built, it will be a size that can "accommodate" all the First Nation's children.
But INAC, while it hopes to provide the remote First Nation with portables come this fall, cannot guarantee that timeline.
"We're taking steps forward," said Young. "We're hopeful for fall." There are numerous challenges when bringing infrastructure to an isolated community, he said.
For Kashechewan, the new school can't come soon enough.
The community's school has not produced a graduate for nearly two entire years.
That fact was highlighted in a recent report, which took an in-depth look at Kashechewan, its problems and potential solutions.
Former cabinet minister Alan Pope conducted that report.
During an one-on-one interview with The Daily Press last week, Pope revealed that he had "a lot of problems" with Kashechewan's school. "The school system is $9 million-a-year of public expenditure and they haven't had a graduate in two years," he said.
"And they don't teach math or sciences. So no one coming out of there could possibly advance their education."
Pope doesn't conclude what has caused the First Nation's education system to fail so badly, however, he does suggest that the multiple community evacuations could be at play.
Three times in the span of a year Kashechewan had been partially or fully evacuated - twice because of spring-time floods and once because of concerns over the quality of the community's drinking water.
MP Charlie Angus (NDP - Timmins-James Bay) said he hopes INAC is serious not only when it says it will provide a new school, but portables in the meantime as well.
"They can't miss another year," he said.
"These years lost are years these kids can't get back."
Angus admits that he hasn't thoroughly went through the details of this promised school.
He said talk of a new school sounds promising, but he hopes the community will get it without having to fight for it.
"If the government is moving at a good speed on this, than it will be very good news," Angus said.
The deadline of August 31 is for presenters on Aboriginal Education to get their proposals into the conference organizers. For more information visit http://www.theconferenceplanner.ca/ABForum
FRESH NEW WEBSITE FOR ONTARIO ARTISTS!
Many artists in Ontario are unaware of the information and services available to them.
The Ontario government recently created a Web site to provide them with information about a range of programs and services specific to their needs.
The new website - www.ontarioartist.ca - includes links to important information for artists such as:
We’d like you to spread the word to as many artists in Ontario as possible.
FAAY announcement ...
FOUNDATION FOR THE ADVANCEMENT OF ABORIGINAL YOUTH (FAAY) SCHOLARSHIP AND BURSARY PROGRAM
The Foundation for the Advancement of Aboriginal Youth (FAAY) Scholarships and Bursaries are now available for 2007/2008. Information and application forms can be found online at
http://www.ccab.com/faay/ or call 1-866-566-FAAY
FAAY is an initiative of the Canadian Council of Aboriginal Business. Since 1994, CCAB has helped distribute nearly $2 million to 1260 students in every province and territory. Last year, they distributed more than $300,000 to 131 deserving Aboriginal scholars.
High School Student?
Any Aboriginal student heading into grade 9 or higher at a Canadian high school can apply for a bursary.
University or College Student?
Aboriginal students studying full-time at an accredited post-secondary institution in Canada can apply for a scholarship.
Deadline for application is October 12, 2007.
Urban Aboriginal Strategy
BC Office of the Federal Interlocutor
The foundation of every nation is the education of its youth
Marlene Erickson,Coordinator First Nations Education Support Services
Phone: 250-562-2131 (Ext 460) or 1-800-371-8111
Oshki-Pimache-O-Win Request for Proposals
Date of Issue: July 9, 2007
Date of Closure: July 23, 2007 / 4:30 pm EST
Instructors and teachers providing Moodle consulting services.
Title and Purpose of RFP: Moodle Instructional Designer
Oshki-Pimache-O-Win is seeking an experienced instructor/teacher with expertise in the use of the Moodle learning management system to provide assistance to the E-Learning Coordinator for the implementation of Moodle courses for the Institute.
Note: In this RFP, Moodle and online course design is aimed at First Nations adult learners.
The following two press releases highlight the challenges facing First Nation post-secondary students and their institutions. The First Nations Technical Institute (FNTI) works with K-Net to access their broadband connections ...
Aboriginal Students Spiked in Game of Federal-Provincial Volleyball
By Karihwakeron Tim Thompson
President and CAO, First Nations Technical Institute (FNTI)
OTTAWA, June 28 - "The education of Indians consists not merely of training the mind but of a weaning of the habits and feelings of their ancestors and the acquirements of the language, arts and customs of civilized life." Egerton Ryerson, 1847
Egerton Ryerson is celebrated as the father of the public school system in Canada. Few Canadians know that as a consequence of a report on Aboriginal education he tabled to the government of the day Mr. Ryerson is also the father of the residential school system which has left a legacy of inter-generational social and cultural disruption among the many nations of Indigenous peoples across Canada.
"I want to get rid of the Indian problem. I do not think as a matter of fact, that the country ought to continuously protect a class of people who are able to stand alone... That has been the whole purpose of Indian education and advancement since the earliest times... Our objective is to continue until there is not a single Indian in Canada that has not been absorbed into the body politic and there is no Indian question, and no Indian Department...". Duncan Campbell Scott, Deputy Superintendent General of Indian Affairs, 1920
The residential school system was the primary weapon to implement a federal policy designed to destroy the cultural identities of Aboriginal peoples. Despite the fact that academic education was far from a priority of these institutions, the federal government of the day did consider the possibility that "civilized" Aboriginal people might be able to experience higher education. Under the Indian Act, an individual would be required to give up their identity and all rights as an Aboriginal person in exchange for the right to get a post-secondary education. This law did not change until 1951 - for many of us, this is our parents generation. Is it any wonder that there are significant gaps in education attainment between Aboriginal peoples and Canadians?
First Nations Technical Institute (FNTI) is an Aboriginal controlled post-secondary institute which was created in 1985 to provide access to post-secondary programs for Aboriginal people. We are succeeding.
FNTI offers a variety of degree, diploma and certificate programs in partnership with provincially recognized colleges and universities. The Institute has gained international recognition for work in Prior Learning Assessment and Recognition (PLAR) and adult education initiatives. Our annual conference is attended by delegates from around the world. This has led to our involvement in working with Indigenous nations, state governments, and industry in countries such as South Africa, Ecuador and Chile. Ironically, our international engagements are bringing us significant recognition. Yet here in Ontario, Canada, we exist as the unwanted relative that neither jurisdiction wants to acknowledge.
The federal government has constitutional responsibility for "Indians" and acknowledges its responsibility for education on reserve. However, the federal government has attempted to limit its legal responsibility to Grade 12 and takes the position that post-secondary is a provincial responsibility. I don't think they've ever told this to the government of Ontario so I fear I may be releasing secret information. In Ontario, Aboriginal controlled institutions are not considered as colleges or universities but are instead treated as "Indians" which, of course, are a federal responsibility. FNTI is tired of being in the middle of an endless jurisdictional volleyball game.
Because we exist on the periphery of the post-secondary education system, we must engage in partnership agreements with mainstream colleges and universities in order to "accredit" our programs. Although we have valued partnerships, forced paternalism can be difficult to stomach. I'll let out another secret but please don't tell Ontario - many of our partners are never actually seen because they simply leave us alone to develop and deliver post-secondary education initiatives without their involvement.
Each year, we await an annual allocation from both governments. The federal allocation is based not on any educational outcomes, but on historical amounts. Despite growing from seven post-secondary programs last year to eleven this year with approximately 400 students, federal funding which we use to support core operations has declined by 50% since 2004. FNTI received a letter this year which advised that there are no guarantees to maintain our funding levels next year and to be prepared for additional cuts. I guess we have to go back to South America once again to feel good about ourselves.
Last week we were informed that in the upcoming school year the government of Ontario values an Aboriginal student attending FNTI at $1677, approximately 20% of the value of a student attending a college or university in this province. This is expected to cover all costs associated with the delivery of a post-secondary program while also acknowledges that we must pay some of our partners for accreditation arrangements. I'll be frank - we cannot deliver a Mohawk Language Immersion program for $11,000 a year, but we'll somehow find a way. I'm pretty certain French and English language programs in other colleges and universities are compensated at a somewhat higher rate. This is where the jurisdictional volleyball game becomes a game of chicken. Each government assumes that by placing the future of 400 Aboriginal post-secondary students at risk, the other government will step in and ensure operations continue uninterrupted. But what if neither government decides to step up?
The Premier of Ontario would like to be known as the education Premier and established some impressive credentials early in his term in office. His government even created a post-secondary access and opportunities strategy for Aboriginal peoples and historically disadvantaged people. However, there is no way to accept inaction on the outstanding matter of equity for FNTI and Aboriginal controlled institutions in Ontario. It would be a tragedy if FNTI was forced to eliminate initiatives because of a failure of leadership in Ontario. I hope the Premier will take corrective measures immediately to ensure that this does not happen.
Why place the onus on the Premier and not the federal government? Well, it seems logical given that we do deliver provincially recognized education programs within Ontario. When one considers that the federal funding formula for First Nations elementary and secondary schools has not changed since 1987, and a recent post-secondary education report by the Minister of Indian Affairs to the Parliamentary Standing Committee on Aboriginal Peoples failed to even make reference to Aboriginal institutions, one can guess that change on the federal side is likely going to take a long, long time.
So, Premier McGuinty, will the legacy of your initial term in office be one of groundbreaking leadership in achieving equity for FNTI and Aboriginal institutions? Or will you simply allow the status quo to prevail where the Institute and its students are placed at risk? I think you have shown your good heart in education and I trust you will act quickly to address the inequities. With fairness and equity, I have no doubt that significant accomplishments will be made in Aboriginal education in Ontario.
Karihwakeron Tim Thompson
President and CAO
First Nations Technical Institute (FNTI)
3 Old York Road,
Tyendinaga Mohawk Territory, Ontario. K0K 1X0
(613) 396-2122 ext. 133
For further information: Karihwakeron Tim Thompson, President and CAO, First Nations Technical Institute (FNTI), (613) 396-2122 ext. 133
FNTI press release ....
FNTI Demands Fairness, Equity and Justice In PSE Funding
TYENDINAGA, ON, June 28 - "The Government of Ontario values an Aboriginal post-secondary student at FNTI at one-fifth of a student attending other colleges and universities. We cannot wait another 22 years to address this inequity," stated Karihwakeron Tim Thompson, President and CAO of FNTI (First Nations Technical Institute).
FNTI is an Aboriginal controlled post-secondary institution which came into existence in 1985 as a result of an innovative partnership between the FNTI Board of Directors, and the federal and provincial governments. FNTI has graduated over 2000 people from its certificate, diploma and degree programs and boasts a 90% graduation rate. It offers unique programs which reflect Indigenous knowledge, responding to Aboriginal socio-economic needs, and developing community human resource capacity to enhance self-government and self-determination. FNTI is making significant contributions to reduce the post-secondary education attainment gap which exists between Aboriginal peoples and the Canadian population.
The federal government believes support for Aboriginal institutions is a matter for the provinces and has said so as recently as June 2007 in a report tabled with a Parliamentary Committee. Ontario offers a program which provides support for program development and delivery in Aboriginal institutions, however, at funding levels of $1677 per student this is approximately 20% of per student allocations to support colleges and universities in Ontario.
"FNTI faces an annual struggle to survive, due to the fact that both levels of government engage in short-term programs and half-measures. FNTI is a success story yet we find ourselves being tossed around in an annual game of jurisdictional volleyball which constantly threatens our very existence," said William J. Brant, Chair of the FNTI Board of Directors.
"The lack of urgent action by both governments is inexcusable," FNTI President Thompson added. "I had hoped the age of institutional assimilation had passed. It is time for Ontario to demonstrate leadership and make room for FNTI in a truly inclusive post-secondary system. I call upon the Minister of Training, Colleges and Universities to work with FNTI to remove the system barriers which undermine our operations.
We are seeking fairness, equity, and justice. Surely these are values with which Ontario agrees."
For further information: Karihwakeron Tim Thompson, FNTI President and CAO, Tyendinaga Mohawk Territory, (613) 396-2122 ext. 133
Native-focused school eyed
KATE DUBINSKI, SUN MEDIA - June 27, 2007
The city's aboriginals seek an immersion school based on their culture, open to all.
It would be a school where music class would focus on drums instead of the recorder.
In art, students would study carving and beading, and in history, they'd learn the stories of native leaders.
The N'Amerind Friendship Centre will push the Thames Valley District school board at a meeting tonight to establish an aboriginal cultural immersion school.
"There is not one school in the Thames Valley school board that offers native languages," said Chester Langille, the centre's executive director.
"What we want is a stand-alone school, open to everyone, focused on aboriginal culture along with the regular compulsory provincial curriculum."
Langille and representatives of the National Association of Friendship Centres will meet tonight with Peggy Sattler, chairperson of the Thames board, and other board officials.
"They're in the midst of their capital planning process, and we want them to look at this possibility. We talked to them about it two years ago," Langille said.
"The native population is the fastest growing in Canada. Forty per cent of our population is under 18 . . . and our young people will form an important part of the economy."
However, it's also the population with the highest dropout rate in Canada, and many available services aren't reaching those in need.
The Thames board has 600 aboriginal students in its schools, according to its records, but Langille said the number is 2,000.
The discrepancy comes because only native kids living on reserves are funded and counted as aboriginal (the school board gets federal grant money for them), but the vast majority of Ontario's aboriginal population -- 80 per cent -- lives in urban centres.
"School boards never identify the needs, because how do you meet the needs of a population that's invisible?" Langille said.
The vision for the school would be one where aboriginal issues would be woven into the provincial curriculum, and the school would be open to all students.
"Ultimately, the overlying vision is about decolonizing native students, and to reverse the impact of residential schools."
If the school was built around the N'Amerind Friendship Centre, at the corner of Colborne and Horton streets, then the 19 social programs already available there -- everything from family violence to addiction to prenatal help -- could be delivered to students who need them.
"The kids could focus on education and not the social issues which negatively impact them."
The meeting is set for today at 7 p.m. at the N'Amerind Friendship Centre.
No Higher Priority: Aboriginal Post Secondary Education in Canada
INAC Minister Prentice provides a response to the Sixth Report of the Standing Committee on Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development. Entitled "No Higher Priority: Aboriginal Post Secondary Education in Canada," the report was tabled in the House of Commons on February 12, 2007.
The response also includes specific information about concerning each of the recommendations and proposals made by the committee concerning how INAC staff are attempting to address the identified issues.
Detailed Responses to the Recommendations
Committee Proposals and Responses