We call upon the federal, provincial, and territorial governments, in consultation and collaboration with Survivors, Aboriginal peoples, and educators, to:
- Make age-appropriate curriculum on residential schools, Treaties, and Aboriginal peoples’ historical and contemporary contributions to Canada a mandatory education requirement for Kindergarten to Grade Twelve students.
- Provide the necessary funding to post-secondary institutions to educate teachers on how to integrate Indigenous knowledge and teaching methods into classrooms
- Provide the necessary funding to Aboriginal schools to utilize Indigenous knowledge and teaching methods in classrooms.
- Establish senior-level positions in government at the assistant deputy minister level or higher dedicated to Aboriginal content in education.
Specific status updates are as follows:
- Multiple initiatives in most – not all – provinces and territories on mandatory K-12 curriculum development to integrate Indigenous history and culture;
- Funding established for teacher training to integrate Indigenous knowledge and teaching methods;
- Funding to Indigenous schools is inconsistent (new First Nation Education agreements have been signed)
- Minimal commitment to appointing senior-level positions in government to Indigenous Education
The government of Canada is working with the Council of Ministers of Education to enhance knowledge and awareness of First Nations, Inuit and Métis history and culture across Canada and to enhance the knowledge and awareness of teachers, students and school leaders on the history and culture of Indigenous peoples.
June 15, 2021: A poll released by the Canadian Race Relations Foundation, the Assembly of First Nations and Abacus Data on June 15, 2021 shows that the majority of Canadians believe governments are not doing enough to teach students about the legacy of the residential school system.
- 62 percent of Canadians believe that provincial education curricula do not include nearly enough about residential schools,
- 65 percent believe the level of education around residential schools should increase.
- 70 percent of survey respondents say that the framing of residential schools has been downplayed in the education system.
Oct 1, 2020: Curriculum advisors in Alberta are recommending that all references to residential schools and “equity” be eliminated in the Kindergarten-to-Grade 4 curriculum, a move that education experts call regressive, racist and unsupported by research (Oct. 2020). In addition, the Métis Nation of Alberta cites “monumental concerns about the Euro-American colonial undertones in the proposed K-6 curriculum.”
Ontario has also reneged on the initial commitment by the previous Liberal government to revise the curriculum to include mandatory Indigenous content. The content is now optional.
July 13, 2022: Ontario removes Indigenous Science Framework from curriculum
Aug. 8, 2022: Ontario removes Indigenous content from elementary Science curriculum starting in Sept. 2022. See “Current Problems in Education” on Education Landing Page for details
Govt. Commitments to Education
Indigenous course requirement now in place for B.C. high school students
School districts say they are still working with First Nations to develop regionally specific courses As of this school year, British Columbians will not be……
September 13, 2023
Mandatory K-12 Commitments
Grade 11 English course with focus on Indigenous voices to become mandatory in London region
The course is already a requirement for students in many school boards in the province Works by Indigenous authors will be the focus of a……
May 26, 2023