For Immediate Release
June 27, 2012
Ministry of Education
Medicine wheel frames Aboriginal Education Agreement
GRAND FORKS – Drum songs accompanied the signing of the second Aboriginal Education Enhancement Agreement (AEEA) in the Boundary school district. The celebration took place at Gallery 2, Grand Forks and district Art and Heritage Centre.
This five-year agreement is committed to a holistic approach, as informed by medicine wheel teachings, to improve educational success for students of First Nations, Métis and Inuit ancestry. The medicine wheel’s four quadrants represent balance and will be used to articulate the goals of academic success and spiritual, emotional and physical well-being of students.
The Boundary AEEA was developed through staff and community consultation with representatives from the Boundary Métis Community Association and Boundary All Nations Aboriginal Council.
Since 2006, events like Sinixt legends and history, Ktunaxa grass dancing and Métis jigging and culture presentations have been featured in classrooms. As a result of this commitment to a holistic approach to education, the district’s Aboriginal student graduation rates are at an all-time high.
Minister of Education George Abbott –
“Today’s signing of the second Aboriginal Education Enhancement Agreement in the Boundary school district symbolizes a strong commitment by everyone involved to improve learning outcomes for Aboriginal students. We’re seeing some great ideas and innovations in the Boundary school district and I think it’s important to celebrate and share these successes across the province.”
Boundary-Similkameen MLA John Slater –
“I want to congratulate the many partners who worked hard to support Aboriginal students in the district through the first Aboriginal Enhancement Agreement. I know this new agreement will build on that strong foundation and support even greater achievements for Aboriginal students in the years ahead.”
SD 51 (Boundary) board chair, Teresa Rezansoff –
“As we work to help make Aboriginal students welcomed and valued in our schools, we also provide an opportunity for all students to benefit from the rich culture and history of the Okanagan people.”
· SD 51 is located in the traditional territories of the Okanagan people, but no on-reserve population resides within the school district.
· Aboriginal graduation rates have increased from 69 percent in 2005-06 to 86.7 percent in 2010-2011.
· To date, there are Aboriginal Education Enhancement Agreements in 53 school districts.
· Eleven districts have signed their second AEEA and four districts have signed their third AEEA.
· Provincial funding for Aboriginal education in 2010-11 was $62.9 million (through a supplement of $1,160 per student).
Boundary School District: http://www.sd51.bc.ca/
B.C.’s Aboriginal Enhancement Agreements: http://www.bced.gov.bc.ca/abed/agreements/
BC’s Education Plan: http://www.bcedplan.ca/
Government Communications and Public Engagement
Ministry of Education
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