Supporting aboriginal students flipped staff meeting
Education Centre 2012/2013
Current Number of Aboriginal Students Enrolled in Alternate Education Number of Aboriginal Students in each ClassBridges (Harry) - 9 Bridges (Bonny) – 11Futures - 9 Futures (English) – 6STEAM - 11 Creative Technology – 7CSS Bridges – 8 REAL – 2Empowered – 8 YPP – 10AMUT – 2Total Number of Aboriginal Students – 83 (42%)Total Number of Non-Aboriginal Students – 114 (58%)
What do we Know about our Aboriginal Students? We know some students have a cultural connection and some are not as connected. We know we need to be purposeful on how we support our aboriginal students. We know we continue to have some struggles with the graduation rate for our aboriginal students. Although, it is important to note that our success rate is improving. We know that cultural factors will require our system to be flexible for supporting students. Sto:lo Adult site notices a drop in attendance for fishing, funerals, smoke house… We know our current system does not provide credit towards graduation for the rich learning that is happening within the aboriginal communities.
What do we Know about our Aboriginal Parents? Probably not a strength for our site as parents are rarely in our main building. Sto:lo Adult Education also struggles with regular attendance as they strive to connect with our adult aboriginal students. Some parents and grandparents lived the residential school experience and do not trust schools or have a discomfort towards schools. We know that providing food can be a good way for connecting with the aboriginal parents. We know that it is important to go to their community as we strive to build relationships. This staff meeting should be at an on-reserve hall. We know our aboriginal parents are comfortable with continuing their education with the on-reserve program provided by Bryan. We know our adult learners struggle with returning to their education and facing registration forms, district aboriginal forms, and a 62 page CATT test.
Aboriginal Support Worker Gay Kelly supports all aboriginal students in our alternate and continuing education programs. A significant amount of her current time is spent at Sto:lo Adult Education Centre supporting the students and taking care of paper work. Gay attends the School Based Team Meetings for alternate school students and provides support at the classroom level for two days. Gay also provides support for all teachers who are interested in having guest speakers for class activities.
Extra Aboriginal Support Worker Time? We need to check the district formula to gain an understanding on changes to our allocated time (was at 1.4 and decreased to 1.0 with increased number of students) The following strategies should be a focus with increased time: home visits, increased academic support, increased cultural feeling to our school – art…, increased community connection with elders joining our school, increased involvement in transitions, should attend meetings when a student is moved to an Evergreen Certificate…
Strategies for Connecting our Aboriginal Students Increased culture embedded in our curriculum. Currently, we have a very Eurocentric curriculum. Pro-D sessions offered to staff members in order to be purposeful on our approaches for supporting aboriginal students. Build a stronger connection with district supports. Nerine Graham our District Aboriginal Education Coordinator is an amazing support with great ideas for us to consider. Brenda Point is another wonderful support who is the District VP of Aboriginal Education and VP at Shxwetetilthet.
Do we Create a Specific Program? There has been some talk in our district about creating an Aboriginal Academy for students. There is a district on the Island with an Aboriginal Academy. Create learning environment that embraces aboriginal culture for the delivery of curriculum. Story telling is a significant learning tool for an eldler to help aboriginal youth with their learning. Malcolm has noticed success with his aboriginal students remembering with a narrative learning style. Learning in circles rather than in desks. Explore ethno botony, button blankets, mathematics in aboriginal art…