Nipissing First Nation– Anishinabek Nation Grand Council Chief Patrick Madahbee points to success with Kettle and Stony Point First Nation which has partnered with the Martin Aboriginal Education Initiative. “We’ve been negotiating our own education agreement for 19 years to fund our own Anishinabek Education System,” says Grand Council Chief Madahbee. “This education funding will be important to the success of our communities in the future.”
The success gap between Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal Canadians has deep roots, most of which stem from low literacy levels. Because of this, improving the quality of education provided by schools on reserve must be a priority.
The Model School Project, known as Wiiji Kakendaasodaa, was launched at the Hillside School on the Kettle and Stony Point in 2010. The project was funded in part through former Prime Minister Paul Martin’s aboriginal education initiative. Its goal was to demand more of teachers and to see students reach their potential.
After five years of intensive intervention that taught teachers new methods, raised expectations for students and introduced a mandatory 90 minutes of daily reading and writing instruction, their test scores have improved dramatically, a result its backers hope will encourage governments to adopt its lessons for tackling the gap in indigenous educational achievement.