School board voices concerns about new First Nations education act

  • Mar. 28, 2014 2:00 p.m.

School District 50 is adding its voice to the many others across the country with serious concerns about the federal government’s planned First Nations Education Act. The act, under discussion for the last four years but not yet introduced in Parliament, is designed to establish structures and standards necessary to ensure stronger, more accountable education systems on reserves and will result in better outcomes for First Nations students, according to the federal government. It will provide an extra $1.9 billion to address a financial shortfall for on-reserve education starting next year.”When implemented, the legislation will provide stable and predictable statutory funding consistent with provincial education funding models,” the Harper government said.But it’s not been popular with many groups, now including School District 50, which agreed to send a letter when it met in Sandspit on Tuesday.”Â…I am writing to express our serious concerns about the (act),” School District 50 chair Elizabeth Condrotte wrote in an undated but recent letter to Bernard Valcourt, Minister of Aboriginal Affairs. Ms Condrotte also said many First Nations have objected to the legislation, given its limited timelines and inadequate consultation and accommodation. Ms Condrotte calls the act a “serious threat to our (provincial) system” and said the “proposal includes overly prescriptive, authoritarian requirements”, and “suggests detailed regulations which would dictate how First Nations would operate their own schools”. She ended by calling on the minister to work with First Nations “in a truly respectful engagement to mutually determine what education reforms and funding are needed to support the appropriate and effective First Nations-controlled education system being advanced in BC.” Other critics include the federal New Democrats, which recently expressed major concerns about how and when the act will be implemented and the Assembly of First Nations, whose chief Shawn Atleo said the act is “not acceptable”.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Skidegate Saints return to top of the Seniors Division with comeback effort against Metlakatla AK

Jesse Barnes wins MVP as Saints get revenge on Alaska side in All Native finale

Haida Gwaii teams well in contention at All Native

Haida Gwaii teams well in contention at All Native

Northern Health recommends self-quarantine for people returning from Hubei

The healthcare provider said it isn’t neccessary for healthy children to wear face masks

Wet’suwet’en return to camps near Houston, Coastal GasLink workers move through: First Nation

Opponents of a pipeline who support the Wet’suwet’en hereditary chiefs have reoccupied camps at centre of arrests

Man hooks massive fine fishing in MPA of Haida Gwaii

Fishing in a glass sponge of coast of Haida Gwaii reef nets a large fine

VIDEO: Minister reports ‘modest progress’ after blockade talks with First Nation

Wet’suwet’en hereditary chiefs say Coastal GasLink does not have authority to go through their lands

Henrique scores 2 as Ducks soar past Canucks 5-1

Vancouver tumbles out of top spot in Pacific Division

Trudeau cancels Caribbean trip amid pipeline protests across Canada

Protests against Coastal GasLink have disrupted rail service

B.C. VIEWS: Inaction on pipeline protests not a viable response

Columnist Frank Bucholtz on how the Coastal GasLink pipeline dispute got so bad

PHOTOS: Top 10 memories of the 2010 Olympics

Black Press Media’s Jenna Hauck, shares some of her most memorable images of 2010 Winter Games

#FoxForFiver: Support grows in B.C. to put Terry Fox on new $5 bill

Terry Fox’ Marathon of Hope raised money for cancer research

Registration opens soon for BC 55+ Games in Richmond

2020 55+ Games have been officially scheduled for Sept. 15 to 19

Trudeau confers with cabinet ministers as rail blockades continue

The Trudeau government has been criticized for not doing more to end the blockades

Canadian nurses’ unions warn national standards for coronavirus protection too low

President says safety protocols nationwide are inadequate compared to those in Ontario and other countries

Most Read