Demonstrating their continued commitment to aboriginal education, the Kootenay Lake school district has raised the number of available scholarships for First Nations students.
“We’re really excited to announce that there are now 12 scholarships available, and the amount offered will be raised from $750 to $1,000,” SD8 secretary-treasurer Kim Morris told trustees Tuesday.
Superintendent Jeff Jones believes this will make an impact in aboriginal-identified students’ lives.
“One way we support our aboriginal students is to help them see it is possible to pursue post-secondary opportunities after completing K-12,” said Superintendent Jeff Jones, who added the increase was made possible by a carried-over surplus.
Aboriginal education is a top priority in the new curriculum, and the district has been making a concerted effort lately to develop its relationship with First Nations. It recently introduced an acknowledgement of their traditional territories at the beginning of each meeting, and the board recently heard a presentation from teacher Shannon Lanaway on the topic.
“There’s a revival happening worldwide for aboriginal education,” Lanaway told the board. “This is changing the way we teach.”
Lanaway attended a conference on aboriginal education in which a Salmo Secondary teacher told her “I was sickened to learn Canada committed cultural genocide — I’m just starting to learn that as an educator.”