Indigenous Woman

Indigenous Woman

Tuesday, 26 April 2011

Enhancing Aboriginal Gains in Literacy Education (EAGLE) SD 35

I was speaking to a friend yesterday about a Cultural Kindergarten Program called the EAGLE program.  She has been concerned about this program since the current BC government introduced and brought in full day kindergarten.  On the surface sure full day kindergarten for all looks great, but its not good for the Aboriginal children in the EAGLE program.  Over the past few years there have been long wait lists and full classes.  This year not enough to support the running of this one of a kind program.
Children who self identify as having Aboriginal Ancestry attend their local school kindergarten program and the EAGLE program in the afternoon.  Within the program the children work with Aboriginal Elders and experience Indigenous sense of belonging. This particular program has provided a service to Aboriginal children and can't be replicated.

This is crazy the Langley EAGLE program is going to be dropped from programs and services offered to Aboriginal children.

Off the backs of Aboriginal children in the name of equality for all this one of a kind program is under threat of extinction.

Without our languages our cultures cannot survive!


1 comment:

Scott said...

Make a difference and be courageous for bc Aboriginal children!
The purpose for bringing in full day kindergarten for Aboriginal, ESL and special needs children was to level the playing field to help our children build a strong foundation not only for their 12 years in school but for the rest of their lives. Some communities have strong, successful Aboriginal kindergarten programs in place that are being dismantled with the implementation of full day kindergarten.
Many voices from many Aboriginal communities speak through their Enhancement Agreements about the most important aspect of their childrens education - that their children feel a sense of belonging and have a strong and proud sense of identity. These same voices also stress the importance of the teachings from and relationships with the Elders. This is not something that can be translated into a commodity to be supplied to full-day kindergarten classes. If we are to improve our systems so that we aren’t failing our Aboriginal children, and yes it’s the system that’s failing, not the children, then we must start at kindergarten by setting them up for success.
If we’re truly listening to the wishes of our Aboriginal communities we would be building upon, instead of cancelling, proven successful programs that promote teachings from the Elders, that promote learning through cultural teachings, that promote the building of a strong sense of identity as the foundation for our childrens success.