Voluntary, confidential student self-identification
The Ministry of Education has identified Aboriginal education as one of its key priorities. Since last fall, a greater emphasis has been placed on raising awareness of Aboriginal histories, cultures and perspectives within the Hastings and Prince Edward District School Board through a number of initiatives:
· raising awareness of Aboriginal education;
· receiving input through community consultation;
· enhancing Social Studies programming in elementary schools; and
· offering more Native Studies courses in high schools beginning in September 2009.
All of this is helping us to prepare for the implementation of a voluntary, confidential self-identification process. Parents/guardians of Aboriginal students and Aboriginal students 18 years of age or older will have the opportunity to voluntarily and confidentially self-identify as being of Aboriginal ancestry including First Nation, Métis or Inuit. The self-identification process will assist us to better program for Aboriginal students’ progress and success and help us design education programs and services that ensure all students have the opportunities and resources needed to reach their goals.
Beginning in September 2009, opportunities for self-identification will be provided through student update forms. New students can indicate their ancestry on the student registration form. All students will have the opportunity to self-identify at any time by completing a voluntary, confidential Aboriginal student self- identification form.
HPEDSB will be hosting a series of community forums to allow for open discussion and questions about voluntary, confidential self-identification. Watch for more information about a community forum to be held in your school area. For more information about Aboriginal education, please contact the school board at 613-966-1170 or 1-800-267-4350, extension 2312 or 2270.