CBC – Feb 14, 2017

Shannen Koostachin spoke openly about deplorable conditions she and other aboriginal students had to deal with in their schools on First Nation reserves. The young activist from Attawapiskat First Nation, Ont., took her message to Parliament Hill in 2009, to demand the federal government provide better, safer schools for students living on reserves. Sadly, the 15-year old passed away in a car accident in June 2010.



U Of O Students and Staff Learn How To Build A Birch Bark Canoe

CBC – Feb 14, 2017

When Marcel Labelle decided to chart a new career course building birch bark canoes 13 years ago, it was a journey that would help him reconnect with his Indigenous heritage while taking his craft to universities across Ontario, which has brought him to the University of Ottawa this winter to lead a hands-on canoe-building project. Growing up in Mattawa, Ont. with Métis and Algonquin roots, he learned from a young age how to make a living from the forest. Labelle was a trapper until his fur products stopped selling in the early 1990s.



Affordable U of T Professors Fight to Save Dying Indigenous Languages

CBC – Feb 11, 2017

The Indigenous language Ryan DeCaire is fighting to save isn’t one he spoke regularly — or fluently — while growing up on Wahta Mohawk territory. “People [with Mohawk ancestry] are saying words like, ‘hello’, ‘goodbye’, 1,2,3′ but is that all there is?,” DeCaire asked himself. The questions spurred him to realize that the only people who spoke fluent Mohawk were elders in the community and that time is running out to preserve the language.



First Nations Trades School Inspires Students in Thunder Bay, Ont.

CBC – Feb 10, 2017

First Nations students in Thunder Bay, Ont., are learning the skills they say they need to serve their remote communities at a new trade school that officially opened on Thursday. “It’ll be really useful because we don’t really have a mechanic back in our reserve, so if I learn a lot of stuff, I can help them out over there,” Soda Kakegamic said of the skills he’s learning in the automotive shop. “I can get my own job. I can make my own department, automobile department” at home in Keewaywin First Nation, the 20-year-old student said.



Nan Celebrates Grand Opening of First Nations Trade School

NAN – Feb 10, 2017

Launched in 2014, NAN worked in partnership with NNEC on the development of the First Nations Trades School proposal to ensure that First Nations students can receive trade skills programming at Dennis Franklin Cromarty High School in a supportive environment. Aboriginal youth are one of the fastest growing demographics in Canada, and the increase in the working age population of First Nations represents tremendous economic potential both on and off reserve, according to Statistics Canada’s 2006 Aboriginal People’s Survey



BC Partners with Higher Ed Institutions on First Nations Language Degree

BC Colleges – Feb 10, 2017

BC has announced that it is funding the development of a new degree, titled the Indigenous Language Fluency Degree, that will help preserve First Nations languages. Community consultations were undertaken by the First Nations Education Steering Committee and the Indigenous Adult and Higher Learning Association, who have partnered on this project with postsecondary institutions such as Nicola Valley Institute of Technology, Wilp Wilxo’oskwhl Nisga’a, En’owkin Centre, the University of British Columbia, and the University of Northern British Columbia. The proposed degree program would include two years of language instruction in communities followed by two years at a public postsecondary institution.



First Nations Trade School Officially Opens

TBT News – Feb 9, 2017

Soda Kakegamic of Keewaywin First Nation is enrolled in the First Nations Trade Program and is working on fixing a truck in the automotive technology class. “I enjoy it a lot because it will teach you how to fix vehicles, take them apart and put them back together,” he said. “It’s really useful for when you’re done high school and you go to college. If you want to take automobile mechanic you can come here. Kenny will teach you a lot of stuff. It’s been a really good experience.”



Attawapiskat Community ‘Frustrated’ After Flood Closes New School For Over A Month

Toronto Star – Feb 9, 2017

A new school in a remote northern Ontario indigenous community has been closed for more than a month after a malfunctioning sprinkler system flooded the building. Band council members in Attawapiskat First Nation say the break inside the $30 million elementary school, the only one available to serve the roughly 400 students in the community, leaving much of one floor under water. Chief Executive Wayne Turner says there have been no classes since the sprinkler malfunctioned on Jan. 7.



Carleton Transforming Outdoor Amphitheatre into Indigenous Space

Carleton – Feb 3, 2017

Carleton University will be transforming its outdoor amphitheatre into an Indigenous learning and gathering space, which has temporarily been named Truth and Reconciliation (TRC) Park. The university will consult with Indigenous students, faculty, and staff; as well as Indigenous communities and groups on the use and design of the space. “This project is a wonderful opportunity for Carleton to engage the Indigenous students, faculty and broader community in a necessary dialogue that speaks to our efforts to implement the TRC Calls to Action in a way that tangible, timely and relevant,” said Kahente Horn-Miller, assistant professor in the School of Indigenous and Canadian Studies. The Carleton release outlines a number of other related initiatives that the university is currently pursuing.