History edu 211


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History edu 211

  1. 1. HISTORY OF FIRST NATIONS EDUCATION IN CANADA Presenter: Dr. Evelyn Steinhauer October 10, 15 Lecture 1
  2. 2. Five Phases of First Nations Education 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. Traditional Education; Education by Missionaries; Residential Schools; Integrated Education; and Indian Control of Indian Education (Steinhauer, 2007. Goddard, 1993; Hampton, 1995; Hebert & McCaskill, 1987). 2
  3. 3. Phase 1 – Traditional Education   Prior to European contact, First Nations people had highly developed systems of education. In their education system, the community and the natural environment were the classroom. Learning was for living – for survival. Boys and girls were taught at an early age to observe and utilize, to cope with and respect their environment. 3
  4. 4. Traditional Education cont…   Generally, the traditional forms of Native education can be characterized as oral histories, teaching stories, ceremonies, apprenticeships, learning games, formal instruction, tutoring, and tag-along teaching, and learning by doing. “these traditions continue to be part of many Aboriginal peoples’ lives…” (p. 21, Haig-Brown, et el). 4
  5. 5. Phase 2 -Education by Missionaries   This phase began after the signing of treaties. In this area which is considered Treaty 6 territory, this phase started approximately 1876. Building day schools on the First Nations reserves was the first step taken to honor the educational component of the formal treaty agreements signed between First Nations and Canada on behalf of Britain. 5
  6. 6. Treaties  Between 1871 and 1921, the Crown entered into treaties with various First Nations that enabled the Canadian government to actively pursue agriculture, settlement and resource development of the Canadian West and the North. Because they are numbered 1 to 11, the treaties are often referred to as the "Numbered Treaties.” http://www.aadnc-aandc.gc.ca/eng/1100100016302/1100100016303 6
  7. 7. Treaties   The Numbered Treaties cover Northern Ontario, Manitoba, Saskatchewan, Alberta, and parts of the Yukon, the Northwest Territories and British Columbia. Alberta – Treaties 6, 7, 8 http://www.aadnc-aandc.gc.ca/eng/1100100016302/1100100016303 7
  8. 8. Treaties  Under these treaties, the First Nations who occupied these territories gave up large areas of land to the Crown. In exchange, the treaties provided for such things as reserve lands and other benefits like farm equipment and animals, annual payments, ammunition, clothing and certain rights to hunt and fish. http://www.aadnc-aandc.gc.ca/eng/1100100016302/1100100016303 8
  9. 9. TREATY 6, 7, 8 In Alberta there are: 45 First Nations in three treaty areas 140 reserves Approximately 812,771 hectares of reserve land The most commonly spoken First Nations' languages are: Blackfoot; Cree; Chipweyan; Dene; Sarcee; and Stoney (Nakoda Sioux) Treaty 6 – Signed in 1876 Treaty 7 – Signed in 1877 Treaty 8 – Signed in 1899 9
  10. 10. Treaties  The Crown also made some promises such as maintaining schools on reserves or providing teachers or educational help to the First Nation named in the treaties. Treaty No. 6 included the promise of a medicine chest. http://www.aadnc-aandc.gc.ca/eng/1100100016302/1100100016303 10
  11. 11. Indian Act The Indian Act ("An Act respecting Indians"), is a Canadian statute that concerns registered Indians, their bands, and the system of Indian reserves. The Indian Act was enacted in 1876 by the Parliament of Canada under the provisions of Section 91(24) of the Constitution Act, 1867, which provides Canada's federal government exclusive authority to legislate in relation to "Indians and Lands Reserved for Indians". http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Indian_Act 11
  12. 12. Indian Act  The Indian Act came to be developed over time through separate pieces of colonial legislation regarding Aboriginal peoples across Canada such as the Gradual Civilization Act of 1857 and the Gradual Enfranchisement Act of 1869. In 1876, these acts were consolidated as the Indian Act. 12
  13. 13. Amendments to the Indian Act 1876-1950  Between 1876 and 1950, the purpose of the amendments to the Indian Act was to strengthen the philosophy of civilization and assimilation underlying the first Act. Moreover, many of the changes to the Act granted the government greater powers to move Aboriginals and expropriate their lands for the purpose of non-Aboriginal use.  Key amendments to the Indian Act during this period include:  1885: Prohibition of several traditional Aboriginal ceremonies, such as potlaches.  1894: Removal of band control over non-Aboriginals living on reserves. This power was transferred to the Superintendent General of Indian Affairs.  1905: Power to remove Aboriginal peoples from reserves near towns with more than 8,000 people.  1911: Power to expropriate portions of reserves for roads, railways and other public works, as well as to move an entire reserve away from a municipality if it was deemed expedient.  1914: Requirement that western Aboriginals seek official permission before appearing in Aboriginal “costume” in any public dance, show, exhibition, stampede or pageant.  1918: Power to lease out uncultivated reserve lands to non-Aboriginals if the new leaseholder would use it for farming or pasture.  1927: Prohibition of anyone (Aboriginal or otherwise) from soliciting funds for Aboriginal legal claims without special licence from the Superintendent General. This amendment granted the government control over the ability of Aboriginals to pursue land claims.  1930: Prohibition of pool hall owners from allowing entrance of an Aboriginal who “by inordinate frequenting of a pool room either on or off an Indian reserve misspends or wastes his time or means to the detriment of himself, his family or household.” 13
  14. 14. Indian Act  The Indian Act was unilaterally designed to abolish First Nations status as independent, selfgoverning peoples, legislating the rules for membership, abolishing political systems, imposing federally controlled election systems, banning spiritual activities, and creating residential schools” (Steinhauer, 2004, p. 16). 14
  15. 15. Indian Act  Currently, sections 114 to 122 of the Indian Act deal with “schools”. Section 119 in particular allows for the appointment of truant officers who may take a First Nations child into custody and “convey the child to school using as much force as the circumstances require.”  This provision has not been in use for years. 15
  16. 16. Creating the “Indian” The social construction of the “Indian race” in Canada, largely through the legislative power of the Indian Act, its predecessors, and amendments, has attained a social reality that has created deep fissures between Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal Canadians, between various segments of Aboriginal people, and most importantly, within Aboriginal people themselves. 16
  17. 17. Phase 2 continued…    The churches were given the privilege of running these schools, with the government providing financial support and formal supervision and administration. “These schools did not last long as the intent of these schools was to “suppress the native culture as rapidly as possible and fashion a new generation of Indian children…in the image of whitemen” (Buckley, 1992, p. 47) This movement was the start of the next phase. 17
  18. 18. Phase 3 – Residential Schools   Day schools weren’t succeeding in the government’s goal of “suppressing the Native culture” and assimilating the Native children into the non-Aboriginal, Christian culture, so Native children were taken away from their families, and placed in residential schools. In order to do this successfully a policy of assimilation was adopted. 18
  19. 19. Duncan Campbell Scott (Department of Indian Affairs Superintendent) I want to get rid of the Indian problem. . . . Our object is to continue until there is not a single Indian in Canada that has not been absorbed into the body politic, and there is no Indian question, and no Indian Department and that is the whole objective of this Bill. (cited in Titley, 1986, p. 50) 19
  20. 20. Phase 3 – continued…  Residential School Propaganda. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=s_V4d7sXoqU 20
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  27. 27. Phase 3 continued…  “It was a policy designed to move communities, and eventually all Aboriginal peoples from their helpless ‘savage’ state to one of self-reliant ‘civilization’ and thus to make Canada but one community- a non-Aboriginal, Christian one” (RCAP, 1996, p. 2). 27
  28. 28. Phase 3 continued…   With the help of missionaries, the government began its recruitment of residential school students. Although it was successful in convincing some Native parents that this experience would be beneficial to their children, it faced much opposition. In the 1920s, it became mandatory for Native parents to sent their children to these schools. 28
  29. 29. Phase 3 continued…    From ages 3 to 16 the children were removed from their homes and placed in the schools, where they stayed from September until June of each year. They remained isolated from their families for this time. They were not permitted to speak their Native languages. Students were constantly reminded their lifestyles were “evil”, paganistic, and dirty. 29
  30. 30. Phase 3 continued…    Languages, traditions, self-respect, community cohesiveness, parental skills, survival skills, selfesteem were lost. Children were mentally, physically, and sexually abused in these schools. These losses continue to have a huge impact on Native communities even today!!! 30
  31. 31. Phase 3 continued....  Residential Schools Public Service Announcement http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fIKPE_urY8A 31
  32. 32. Phase 3 continued….  I invite you all to go to… Where are the Children? website http://www.wherearethechildren.ca/en/ Arthur Fourstar Part 1 – 26 minutes http://www.wherearethechildren.ca/en/projector/ 32
  33. 33. Phase 4 – Integrated Education   After recognizing that residential schools were not accomplishing what they were designed to achieve, a policy of integrated education was implemented. (1964-1970). “Wherever possible, Indian children would be enrolled in predominately white schools operated by provincial schools…” (Titley, 1980, p. 1). 33
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  35. 35. Phase 5 – Indian Control of Indian Education   Native leaders started fighting back and in the early 1970s, they began seeking control of their children's education. Although “Indian control of Indian Education” was operationalized in 1972, Native people still have very little control of their own education. (We remain a federal responsibility, and someone is still telling us what to do, and how to do it). 35
  36. 36. Historical Timeline  1763 – Royal Proclamation of October 1763 is signed (10/7/1763). This document explicitly recognized aboriginal title, aboriginal land ownership and authority are recognized by the Crown as continuing under British sovereignty. It states that only the Crown could acquire lands from First Nations and only by treaty. By the 1850’s major treaties are signed with First Nations. 36
  37. 37. Historical Timeline   1867 - Canada is created under the terms of the British North American Act. 1876 – The Indian Act is established. It influences all aspercts of a First Nations person’s life from birth to death. Indian Bands were created and Indian Agents became intermediaries between First Nations people and the rest of the county. 37
  38. 38. Historical Timeline   1884 – Responsibility for the eduction of children was given in large part to church-run residential schools. 1893 – Duncan Campbell Scott becomes Deputy Superintendent General of the Department of Indian Affairs. His stated objective was assimilation He rules the department until 1932. 38
  39. 39. Historical Timeline   1960 – First Nations peoples in Canada are permitted to vote in federal elections. 1972 – Indian Control of Indian Education policy document written by national Indianl Brotherhood advocating parental respobsibility and local control over First Nations Education. This policy is accepted by federal government a year later. 39
  40. 40. Historical Timeline    1982 - Canada’s Constitutional Act, Section 35, recognizes and affirms existing Aboriginal and treaty rights. 2008: Prime Minister Stephen Harper offers a formal apology on behalf of Canada over residential schools. 2010: Canada signs the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples. 40
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