Preparing the future leaders

Educating the up and coming generation is an important key to their future success. Education prepares youth to take leadership roles.

New Manitoba curricula and teacher education play a part in that process for both indigenous and non-indigenous students.

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Youth from Canupawakpa community, located along Hwy # 83 between Virden and Pipestone, attend school in Virden, with a few attending school in Reston.

The community is proud of their students who will graduate this June from Virden Collegiate. They include, Kyran Brown, Dreydon Demas, Paige Sandy, Shanell Mason, and Taylor Cuny.

Education begins right in the community. Jolene Sutherland, the administrator for Education at Canupawakpa said that the youngest children, Nursery School and Kindergarten, attend the Wambdi Iyotaka School within their community.

Virden’s Goulter School has Gr. 1 – 4 students from Canupawakpa and provides curriculum dedicated to First Nations students. Linda Eastman teaches Dakota Language there. Faye High Eagle is an educational assistant.

At a recent teacher education day, clinician and educator from Sioux Valley Dakota Nation, Eugene Ross, explained the heritage and way of life of Dakota families. His presentation included photos from the early 20th century, the ancestors of the local Dakota people.

Trade and commerce had begun and all those years ago the Dakota, with skill and industry, built and sold products such as wicker baskets and even small buildings to early settlers.

Education in the history of local lives can provide students with a sense of their place in the world and within the communities around them.

Manitoba’s department of education is providing new curricula to present history from an indigenous perspective. The Assembly of First Nations (AFN) developed “It's Our Time: First Nations Education Tool Kit” to help teachers to enhance First Nations student success.

The resource is designed to increase understanding of aboriginal history and culture among Indigenous and non-Indigenous peoples and to complement both First Nations and provincial curricula.

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