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During the 93rd annual BCTF Annual General Meeting, teachers passed three key recommendations to help improve education for BC’s Aboriginal students.

The first two recommendations call on the Ministry of Education to review and report back to the Aboriginal Education Partners Groups about the effectiveness of targeted funding for Aboriginal students. The goal of these recommendations is to improve accountability and ensure targeted funding provided to school districts is reaching students and enhancing the educational experiences of aboriginal children.

“The provincial government needs to ensure the funding given to school districts is actually getting to aboriginal students,” said BCTF President Irene Lanzinger. “This is about following the money, improving accountability, and enhancing learning conditions for Aboriginal students. All education partners need to work together to ensure the needs of our aboriginal students are being met.”

BCTF members also passed a recommendation calling on BC faculties of education to include education and training antiracism as it relates specifically to Aboriginal students.

“Making antiracism training mandatory for new teachers will help create more inclusive classrooms for all students, including Aboriginal children,” said Lanzinger.

The following recommendations were passed at the BCTF AGM:

That the BCTF lobby the Ministry of Education to undertake a review of the spending of targeted funding, and request that the ministry provide:
1. an initial report to the Aboriginal Education Partners Group (AEPG) for review by September 2009.
2. a report to the AEPG annually, starting September 2010.

That the BCTF encourage members of the Aboriginal Education Partners Group (AEPG) to lobby the ministry to report on expenditures from “targeted funding,” and that the BCTF encourage the AEPG to add targeted funding as a standing item on its agenda.

That the BCTF urge faculties of education in British Columbia to require that all preservice teachers receive mandatory education in Aboriginal peoples’ history as Founding Nations and training in antiracism as it relates to Aboriginal students.

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For more information, contact Rich Overgaard, BCTF media relations officer, at 604-871-1881 (office) or 604-340-1959 (cell).

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