Pro “D” Day to Focus on Aboriginal Education
Prince George, B.C. – Hundreds of teachers, support staff, and community members will descend on the Civic Centre today for an Aboriginal education symposium.
Aboriginal Education Department District 57 manager Shelly Niemi says it will focus on opening up a dialogue and conversation in and around ways to embed Aboriginal education into the new curriculum being phased in by the provincial government.
“Within that new curriculum there is a lot of indigenous knowledge and traditional ways of knowing that are embedded with it and so what we’re doing is inviting keynote speakers to help us better understand why it’s important.”
She says it’s an exciting time for Aboriginal education considering this is the first time Aboriginal knowledge is being represented within public education “in a meaningful way.”
Niemi says one of the goals is to help Aboriginal kids see themselves as part of the education system and to close the gap in aboriginal versus non-aboriginal graduation rates.
In 2015 for example, she says 61% of aboriginal students graduated in School District 57 compared to 81% of non-aboriginal students.