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Some Essentials about Indian

Education for All

--Background Knowledge Building

The Northwest Montana Educational Cooperative
(Created from and credit given to the information obtained on the OPI website)
“Let us put our minds
together and see
what life we can make
for our children.”
Tatanka Iyotake
(Sitting Bull)
Constitutional Connections
 When was language added to MT’s
constitution regarding American Indians?
A) 1972
B) 1980
C) 1991
D) 2005
 The correct answer is A, 1972!
Constitutional Connections
The language added via Montana Constitutional
Article X, Section 1(2):

“The state recognizes the distinct and unique

cultural heritage of American Indians and is
committed in its educational goals to the
preservation of their cultural integrity.”
Constitutional Connections
 What year did the Legislature pass House
Bill 528 into law—MCA 20-1-501—what is
known as Indian Education for All?
A) 1972
B) 1980
C) 1999
D) 2005
 The correct answer is C, 1999!
Constitutional Connections
 Every Montanan, whether Indian or non-Indian, be
encouraged to learn about the distinct and unique
heritage of American Indians in a culturally
responsive manner
 All school personnel should have an understanding
and awareness of Indian tribes to help them relate
effectively with Indian students and parents
 Every educational agency and all educational
personnel will work cooperatively with Montana
tribes when providing instruction and implementing
an educational goal
Constitutional Connections
 When did the Legislature adopt Senate Joint
Resolution Number 11, which directed the
committee on Indian Affairs to study the Article X
Section 1(2)?
A) 1975
B) 1985
C) 1995
D) 2005
 The correct answer is C, 1995!
Constitutional Connection
 As per the 2005 Annual Data Collection (ADC) Summary,
what percent of schools had a board approved policy on the
implementation of MCA 20-10-501 (Indian Education for
A) 10%
B) 55%
C) 81%
D) 100%
The correct answer is C, 81%
Does your school have this policy? Or, are you part of the
19% that doesn’t have it in place yet?
Important Data Regarding
Indian Population
Population Percentages for Montana
Based on the 2000 Census

Indians 6.2 %
American Indian Students
in Montana Schools (2005)


50 American Indian
40 Non-Indian
30 Student

Montana Students Montana Student Population
American Indian=16,422
Non American Indian=145,327
District Distribution of
Indian Students (2005)
41 Districts report
(50-100% of their students are American Indian)

10 Districts report
(30-50% of their students are American Indian)

34 Districts report
(10-30% of their students are American Indian)

Some things to consider, how many students do not report

they are American Indian?
Where does your district fall in regard to these categories?
American Indians and
Where They Live (Census 2005)

Live on a
35% 65% reservation
Live off a
AYP and Indian Students

 Did you know that 70% of districts on

reservations did not make AYP?

 Did you know that 33 districts exist on


 How can we help?

How Did the Funding Come?
 In 2005 the Montana Quality Education Coalition
sued the State of Montana asserting that its
educational funding scheme was unconstitutional.
 The court told the legislature to define quality
education and then fund it.
 After “quality” was defined, a special session of the
Legislature met in 2005 and provided funding to
implement their definition of quality—which
included funding for Indian Education for All.
Two Purpose for Funding
 Closing the Achievement Gap
 --Provided for schools who have an Indian
 Indian Education for All
 --Provided for ALL schools regardless of
Indian population
The Funding Formula
 Closing the Achievement Gap Funds
($200 per Indian Student from $3,279,200)
 Indian Education for All

($20.40 per ANB from $3,002,430)

 Indian Education for All One Time Only

(per ANB from $7,000,000)

Implications for Teachers
 Developing personal background knowledge
 Setting the stage for student background knowledge
 Evaluating current, in use, materials and resources
 Navigating new materials
 Infusing curriculum with essential understandings
 Learning about culturally responsive teaching
 Needing time for planning and collaboration!!
Charge from OPI
They’re working to make the materials
and resources on their website . . .
 Teacher Friendly

 Accurate and Authentic

 Research-based
Co-op Connection
 Facilitate Indian Education for All Committee
 Coordinate information dissemination
(i.e. Board PowerPoint, Teacher Background
Knowledge, Curriculum Materials, Professional
Development Information)
 Research materials and best practices
 Incorporate Indian Education for All Essential
Understandings into existing curriculum documents
More Co-op Connection
 Provide links and lessons on website
 Provide information through monthly newsletter
 Develop relationships with other districts, tribal
members, and related organizations
 Coordinate with local resources (CORE) to infuse
Indian Education for All when appropriate (i.e. the
Hockaday, Lone Pine, Glacier Park, etc.)
Research About
Culturally Responsive Teaching

The National Center for Education Statistics projects that

by 2008, 41% of students, but only 5% of all teachers, will
be ethnic minorities. (McClure, 2006)

Some studies have found that culturally responsive teaching

increases time on task, resulting in more instructional time.
Implications for School Leaders
Maximize Potential Benefits:

 Provide time for collaboration and planning in regard to

Indian Education for All
 Provide opportunities for intensive training and ongoing
 Provide training on how to incorporate hands-on experience
into teaching culturally responsive curriculum units
 Help teachers see other teachers teaching--model lessons
 Implement efforts school wide
 Provide a policy for Indian Education for All at a district,
board member, level
The Essential Understandings

Think about how your school district will

infuse the following seven big picture ideas
across grade levels and across curricular
Essential Understanding 1
Reservations Tribal Groups
 There is great diversity Flathead Salish,Kootenai &
among the 12 tribal Pend d’ Oreille
Blackfeet Blackfeet
Nations and each
contributes to modern Rocky Boy Chippewa-Cree

Montana in a unique Fort Belknap Gros Ventre &

way. Fort Peck Sioux &
Northern Cheyenne Northern Cheyenne

Crow Crow

No Reservation Little Shell Chippewa

Essential Understanding 2
 There is no generic American Indian.
 There is a continuum of Indian identity
ranging from the assimilated to the traditional.

When talking and teaching, one goal is to be

as tribally specific as possible; try to avoid
Essential Understanding 3
 The ideologies of Native traditional beliefs
and spirituality are alive today as tribal
cultures, traditions, and languages are still
 They are incorporated into how tribes govern
themselves and their affairs.
 There is an oral history present that is as valid
as any written history.
Essential Understanding 4
 Reservations were not “given” to tribes, but
rather they are land reserved for tribes for
their own use.
 These lands were reserved through treaties.
Essential Understanding 5
 Many federal policies, throughout American
history, impacted Indian people and shape
who they are today.
 Some major periods were: Colonization
Period, Treaty Period, Allotment Period,
Boarding School Period, Tribal
Reorganization, Termination, and Self-
Essential Understanding 6
 History is a “story” with many narrators.
 Histories are being discovered and rediscovered.
 Indian history told from an Indian perspective
conflicts with what mainstream history tells us.
A clear understanding of Indian history needs to be
in place when using outdated text books so that
history is not just provided from a mainstream
Essential Understanding 7
 Under the American legal system, Indian
tribes have sovereign powers, separate and
independent from federal and state
 The extent and breadth varies.
Increasing Your Own Background
 Visit the OPI website and investigate the materials and
information available there at
--For example, A History and Foundation of American Indian Education Policy

 Attend one of the Co-op’s Indian Education for All Committee


 View one of the videos available from OPI at school near you, or
borrow one from the Co-op
--“Long Ago in Montana”, “Tribes in Montana and How They Got Their Names,” and “Talking Without Words”
Closing Thoughts . . .
 How will we celebrate American Indian
Heritage Day (the fourth Friday in
September) in 2007?
 Teachers in 2005 ranked teacher training as
the number one need, how will we meet that
need now and in years to come?
 Who do you know personally that might be a
resource for the implementation of Indian
Education for All?
Questions? Comments. Concerns!
Special Thanks to . . .
 Mike Jetty (OPI)

 Denise Juneau (OPI)

 Joyce Silverthorne (SKC)