Academics at Yukon’s First Nations Faculty Board obtained particular coaching Thursday because the board formally took management of eight faculties within the territory.
The day’s coaching included a day on the land, with workshops taught by First Nations information keepers and educators. Academics traveled to Whitehorse from a number of communities to attend.
The First Nations Faculty Board grew to become a actuality in February after a referendum in 9 Yukon faculties. Eight voted to affix the board, which goals to offer Indigenous folks extra of a say within the territory’s schooling system. The faculties will proceed to make use of the British Columbia curriculum together with new programming.
Melissa Flynn, the varsity board’s interim government director and a member of the Trʼondëk Hwëchʼin First Nation, was excited to begin working with lecturers forward of the varsity yr.
“It truly is a monumental second to acknowledge the leaders and the aspirations from elders which have come earlier than us to get us thus far,” she stated. “We’re now ready the place we are able to work along with the group of educators and actually embrace what reality and reconciliation seems to be like on our conventional territories.”
Coaching on the land
Thursday’s workshops included conventional beading, hand video games, foraging, and salmon fileting. Academics moved from station to station to attempt totally different actions.
Blake Lepine, an schooling advocate with the Yukon First Nation Schooling Directorate, was main a workshop on wildcrafting and foraging. Lepine is a member of the Carcross Tagish First Nation and has been working with children since he was 18.
“The youngsters actually get pleasure from simply present. I feel that is one of many largest parts of doing these conventional camps,” he stated. “We undervalue simply sitting round a campfire, and simply being collectively and sharing who we’re.”
Lepine stated he hoped lecturers on the workshop would be capable of incorporate First Nations information and values into what they train in faculties.
Andy Carlick, a information keeper from the Tahltan First Nation who was educating a salmon workshop, had comparable hopes.
Carlick was born and raised in Telegraph Creek, B.C. When he was rising up, he stated, he was taught fully by lecturers of European descent. Now, he is hoping Indigenous college students may have extra alternative to attach with their tradition at college.
“As I obtained older, I had an urge to cross on my tradition and cross on information to whoever needs to study,” he stated. “I feel it is vital for all of us to study from one another. It is not simply our tradition, however it’s different cultures too.”
‘Simply so hopeful’
Jean MacLean, principal of Watson Lake Secondary Faculty, stated Thursday’s coaching gave her a number of concepts to include into this college yr.
MacLean hopes to speak with native First Nations about the way to incorporate extra of those experiences into her college’s curriculum.
“I simply suppose it is actually vital to be open-minded, to take actually into consideration what your worldviews are,” she stated.
First Nations leaders within the Yukon have been advocating for extra say within the territory’s schooling system for many years.
“There are leaders and ancestors that got here earlier than us and a few of them did not see today. However they fought,” Flynn stated.
Flynn pressured that returning college students would nonetheless are available and see the identical lecturers, classmates, and different acquainted faces.
However, she stated, the brand new college board is a big step ahead.
“I feel that actual reconciliation coming to fruition is simply so hopeful.”