Indigenous Education Services Report
Peace Wapiti Public School Division's Indigenous Education Services (IES) team works to support the positive experiences and success of the Division's Indigenous students, while advancing Truth and Reconciliation in education for all students and staff.
In her annual update to the Board, Indigenous Education Coordinator Brigitte Benning shared what her team has been focusing on in its second year working within the new program structure.
The IES team continues to provide an ambitious amount of classroom, whole-school and professional development presentations, meet with staff in all areas for consultation and collaboration, engage with communities, and lead numerous projects and programs across the Division.
Indigenous Service Provider Rachelle Bell created and implemented a new program called Culture in the Halls, an activity to remind students to take care of the four-part being (physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual wellness), and help them regulate their emotions and focus their attention.
The IES team has presented and engaged students and staff on a number of topics this school year, including:
As part of the Division's Indigenous Role Model Speaker Series, the IES team has invited a variety of individuals and groups to share their knowledge with our schools; creating more hands-on learning opportunities for everyone.
- Creation and implementation of the Seven Sacred Teaching Series and Medicine Wheel Series
- Tours of the Traditional Healing Garden at the Grande Prairie Friendship Centre
- Métis Week presentations including jigging lessons
- Boys with Braids presentations around Pink Shirt Day
- Tipi Teaching with Elder Len Auger
- Literacy Week series with author of The Way Creator Sees You, Shayla Raine
- School-wide assembly with Métis Leader Angie Crerar
- Hythe Regional School's junior jiggers performances at other PWPSD schools
- Traditional Dance Series with Monique Hommy
- Beading Series with Fran Rogers
- Winter Count Series with Loretta Parenteau-English
- Drum making and mural with Natascha Okimaw
The team continues to work on understanding what schools require and what gaps exist in service across the Division. Team members are looking forward to refining the structure and roles of the team, and continuing to connect with students and staff in the Division's journey toward Truth and Reconciliation.