Together we have created the Aboriginal Education Enhancement Agreement that embodies the shared visions and commitment of all participating parties to the success of Aboriginal students in the following areas:
- Mastery of Skills
- Culture and Community
As well, students have the opportunity to obtain additional support provided by the district’s Aboriginal Programs and Services. The Aboriginal Program and Services are delivered to enhance the student’s educational experiences which align with the above stated goal areas of the Aboriginal Education Enhancement Agreement.
The programs and services are available throughout the school year to elementary, secondary and alternative program students for who have identified or have had parent/guardians identify them as having Aboriginal ancestry (First Nations, status and non-status, Métis, and Inuit) on the school registration form.
The Vancouver Board of Education offers these additional services in a variety of ways:
- Support Services provided by an Aboriginal School Support Worker or Aboriginal Resource Teacher, which may include cultural, academic, social and emotional support, parent liaison and advocacy;
- District wide cultural projects, resources, leadership opportunities, and celebrations
- School based cultural programs and/or courses.
For students who would like to receive service or participate in the variety of cultural projects offered throughout the district, parent/guardian consent forms can be obtained at the school.
Aboriginal Education Department, Learning Services:
District Principal, Aboriginal Education Debra Martel
Clerical Support Diane den Otter
Learning & Development Consultant, Lorinda Moreau
District Team supports the implementation and monitoring of the Aboriginal Education Enhancement Agreement to improve sense of connection and belonging, achievement of Aboriginal students, increase Aboriginal cultural awareness, contributions and historical perspectives.
School Based Aboriginal Education Programs & Services
The following programs are intended to enhance the daily school experience and not intended to replace regular school services.
District Elementary Aboriginal Education Resource Teachers
Academic Support / Cultural Enrichment / Curriculum Integration
- Britannia Elementary (K - 7)
- MacDonald Elementary (K-7)
- Grandview/Uuqinak’uuh Elementary (K-7)
- Southlands Elementary (K-7)
District Secondary Aboriginal Education Staff
Academic Support / Cultural Enrichment / Curriculum Integration
- Sty-wet-tan/Point Grey Secondary
- Britannia Secondary
- Tumanos/Vancouver Technical
District Aboriginal Youth and Family Worker
- This program is intended to provide support Aboriginal students who have become disengaged with the educational system and who require school and program placement at the secondary level.
- District Psycho-Educational Centre.......................................................................... Phone: 604-713-5690
Leadership Engagement Opportunities
- Opportunities for elementary and secondary students to develop leadership skills and abilities and to foster cross cultural awareness.
Aboriginal Achievement Celebration
- A celebration to recognize the achievements of Grade 12 students.
Aboriginal Child and Youth Mental Health Worker
- In partnership with Aboriginal Child and Youth Mental Health, this program assists Aboriginal families understand and benefit from early intervention of mental health, and will acts as a liaison between school counselors, teachers, administrators, students, parents, and other community agencies including referring families to community agencies as appropriate.
Aboriginal Support Service Programs – Aboriginal School Support Workers
- This program is intended to assist Aboriginal students to achieve success in school by providing support services. Services can include: home-school coordination; elder, peer, school or community services liaison; tutorial assistance or other services. Services should reflect the needs of the students, and school community with consultation of parent or guardians.
Please see Table of Support Workers for a list of the support worker attached to each school. For more information, please contact the school office or learning services.
Programs at the District Level
There are three District Aboriginal Alternative Programs in the Vancouver School District: Outreach School, Cedar Walk, and the Aries Project. Each is housed at a different site and offers a specific program design. A description of the programs can be found under Alternative Education.
- Tumanos is an in-house, Vancouver Technical program that enrolls 15 Aboriginal students at the Grade 9/10 level. It is designed to provide them with a supportive academic environment and cultural enrichment. The curriculum comprises the four core courses: English, Social Studies, Mathematics, and Science plus Physical Education, Life Skills, and First Nations Art. In addition, students are integrated into the larger school program for one or more electives. The Program is staffed with one full-time teacher, one Alternate Program Worker, and one Youth and Family Worker dedicated to helping the students as they pursue their academic, personal, and cultural goals.
- Sty-Wet-Tan/Bridges is a grade 8 – 12 school-based program for Aboriginal students at Point Grey Secondary. The program offers modified/adapted curriculum and the ability for some students to complete regular grade 10 credits over a few years. Work experience electives and First Nations cultural opportunities are also key components of the program. Please note that this program is being revised for the 2009-2010 school year.
- Aboriginal Education Cultural/Curriculum Project Fund: The aim of the Aboriginal Education Cultural/Curriculum Project Fund is to provide and support projects for Aboriginal learners that promote academic success, positive self-esteem and cultural awareness in cooperation with educators, families and community members. Each year, schools can apply for project funds.
- Shannon’s Spirit Project: The Oregon Research Institute and the Vancouver School Board have partnered with the Watari Research Association to implement a literacy / addictions intervention program with up to 180 Aboriginal families in Vancouver. The Literacy Program is a year-long program in which 90 minutes are devoted to reading and 90 minutes are devoted to writing instruction. Students will catch up to grade level in a one-year period. The impact of increasing literacy skills quickly in a student’s academic career has far-reaching implications. Each of these improvements is important as a protective factor for students who are at risk of dropout and who are also vulnerable influences existing outside the school environment.
- Homework Clubs Program in partnership with Urban Native Youth Association.