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First Nations, Métis, and Inuit Education

Our Journey Toward Truth and Reconciliation

The staff of St. Paul Education are committed to implementing the 94 Calls to Action of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission specific to education. To help us in our journey towards meeting these Calls to Action, St. Paul School Division will implement the Division Plan for Truth and ReconciliationTo help us achieve the outcomes in this plan, we recognize the importance of walking and working together alongside our neighbouring Nations, including with our Elders, Knowledge Keepers, parents/guardians, students and other community stakeholders. To support us in our journey, St. Paul Education has the following in place: 

1. Cree Language and Culture Programming in St. Paul Division Schools

To support the growth of the Cree language, culture and Ways of Knowing, several division schools offer Cree Language and Culture programs, including:

Ashmont School: 

  • Cree in grades K-9, 
  • Cree 10, 20 and 30
  • Aboriginal Studies 10, 20, 30
  • Elder Chronicles 15 & 25 (Option class focused on Beading, Smudging and Tipi-Making)
  • Treaties and Sovereignty 15 (3 credit high school option course)
  • Land-based Education 10, 20, 30

Glen Avon Community School           

  • Cree in grades 4-9

Heinsburg Community School          

  • Cree in grades K-9

Racette Junior High School               

  • Cree in grades 6-9  

St. Paul Elementary School               

  • Cree in grades 4 and 5 

St. Paul Regional High School          

  • Cree 10, 20, 30 
  • Aboriginal Studies 10, 20, 30 

2. Elder Advisory Council

At St. Paul Education we value the knowledge and wisdom of our Indigenous Elders and Knowledge Keepers. In an effort to help connect our students and staff with our communities and Cree culture, we have established an Elder Advisory Council. 

Our Elder Council consists of one Elder representative from each of our four neighbouring Nations - Frog Lake First Nation, Kehewin Cree Nation, Saddle Lake Cree Nation and Whitefish Lake First Nation #128. Elder representatives from each Nation will be appointed in collaboration with our Cultural Advisor as well as leadership from each Nation.

For the 2023-24 school year, we are pleased to have the following Elder Council members to help guide us on our journey:

  • Laverne Faithful, Frog Lake First Nation
  • Mrs.Trottier, Kehewin Cree Nation
  • Alsena White, Saddle Lake Cree Nation
  • Henry Cardinal, Whitefish Lake First Nation #128

In addition to our above mentioned Elders, our council also includes:

  • The Superintendent of Schools
  • The Division’s Indigenous Education Program Coordinator
  • The Division’s Cultural Advisor
  • 1-2 School Board trustees

Elder Advisory Council Program Goals:

  • Working together on strategies to help us with our goal of eliminating the achievement gap between First Nations, Métis, and Inuit students and all other students within our division.
  • Promoting the integration of First Nation, Metis, and Inuit content and perspectives into curriculum, classrooms and schools.
  • Advising and providing feedback to help guide ongoing planning.
  • Providing consultation on current and future FNMI programming initiatives in St. Paul Education schools.
  • Elders can be called upon to lead ceremonies in schools.

3. St. Paul Education Cultural Advisor

As part of our journey, we are also led by our Cultural Advisor, Mr. Clifford Cardinal. He is responsible for leading our division in promoting cultural understanding and providing advice on culturally relevant practices, protocols and ceremony. He is also responsible for fostering positive relationships and building effective communication channels between our division schools and our Nations. Mr. Cardinal also collaborates with division schools to share his knowledge and ways of knowing.

4. Indigenous Education Committee

Our Indigenous Education Committee is made up of staff representatives from each of our division schools. The committee also includes two trustees, the superintendent of schools, and the Indigenous Education Program Coordinator. The committee meets five times per year, with a focus on supporting Indigenous ways of knowing and implementing objectives from our Division Plan for Reconciliation. 

5. Indigenous Liaison Workers

Indigenous Liaison workers meet regularly with students, either individually or as a group to support their social and academic needs. They seek to establish and foster trusting, meaningful relationships between schools, students who identify as FNMI and their families. By fostering these relationships, our liaison workers increase student engagement in school, resulting in improved student attendance and academic achievement. Our liaison workers also help schools to build connections with community partners to help us best meet the needs of our students. 

The following schools have an Indigenous Liaison Worker as part of their staff team:

  • Ashmont School
  • Glen Avon School
  • Ecole St. Paul Elementary School
  • Heinsburg School
  • Elk Point Elementary
  • Racette Junior High School
  • F.G. Miller School
  • St. Paul Regional High School