15 new Indigenous teacher training seats added at Cowichan VIU campus

15 new Indigenous teacher training seats added at Cowichan VIU campus

Thorne said the new Indigenous teacher education curriculum that is planned at VIU

Brianna Thorne thinks Canadian history has reached a turning point in regards to relations with aboriginal communities, and one for the better.

Thorne, who is of mixed Indigenous ancestry, is a second-year education student at the Cowichan campus of Vancouver Island University.

At a ceremony at the campus on Dec. 6, Education Minister Rob Fleming announced that the province will fund 15 new Indigenous teacher-training seats there that will see more traditional knowledge and culture of aboriginal people brought into B.C.’s classrooms.

Thorne said the new Indigenous teacher education curriculum that is planned at VIU, in collaboration with Cowichan Tribes and other local bands, that will result from the addition of the new seats is another step in the ongoing efforts to have more aboriginal culture and knowledge taught in schools.

RELATED STORY: NEW PROGRAM WILL CERTIFY 24 INDIGENOUS CAREGIVERS

“I believe that incorporating Indigenous perspectives in teacher training is essential because it encourages future educators to think outside the traditional box of teaching,” she said.

“Indigenous knowledge offers students the opportunity to explore the world around them in terms of their relationship to everything on our planet. It teaches about respect, forgiveness, humility and reciprocity. Indigenous knowledge has so much to offer for both Indigenous and non-Indigenous students.”

The Ministry of Education funded $65,000 for the 15 new additional Indigenous teacher education seats at VIU.

The program will be available for students by fall 2019.

The total government funding in 2018 for developing Indigenous teacher programs and expanding seats was $400,000.

RELATED STORY: VIU GETS $150K INFUSION FROM ISLAND SAVINGS

Fleming said the province is committed to the call for action made by the Truth and Reconciliation Commission, which included changes to the K-12 curriculum to reflect indigenous perspectives in all subjects taught in the schools, from math and science to literature.

“A true and lasting reconciliation is at the heart of everything we do, and there’s no question Indigenous students thrive when their culture is reflected in classrooms and they have a connection to what they are learning,” he said.

“Teachers can be incredible role models for change. They have the power to show kids we all benefit from understanding the diversity of Indigenous perspectives and world views.”

In the 2017-18 school year, there were 65,269 Indigenous students enrolled in the province’s public schools, comprising 11.6 per cent of the public school student population.

David Paterson, dean of education at VIU’s Cowichan campus, added that with the funding for the seats, VIU will be able to expand its teacher education program in a way that furthers the critical process of reconciliation, allowing the university to equip future teachers with the knowledge of how to bring culturally relevant practices into their classrooms and support Indigenous learners.

“This type of education is important for all teachers, as is the approach we are taking to develop this curriculum; through a community of practice founded on strong partnerships and collaboration with Indigenous communities,” he said.



robert.barron@cowichanvalleycitizen.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

B.C.’s public health restrictions on non-essential travel are reinforced by orders effective April 23, 2021 to stay within your own regional health authority except for essential travel such as work and medical appointmens. (B.C. government)
B.C.’s COVID-19 non-essential travel ban takes effect, $575 fines approved

Checks on highways, ferries between Lower Mainland, Vancouver Island, Interior

Grade 9 students at Quamichan School got to be virus detectives recently when Genome B.C.’s Geneskool Education Program visited the Cowichan school. (Cowichan Valley School District photo)
Cowichan students become virus detectives with Genome B.C.

Program even more interesting given the worldwide COVID-19 pandemic

The real estate market in the Cowichan Valley is suffering a lack of inventory making it a seller’s market. (Sarah Simpson/Citizen)
Sellers rejoice, home buyers frustrated as prices up, inventory low in Cowichan Valley

Demand for homes in the Cowichan Valley is exceeding supply, driving up… Continue reading

Open as of April 17, Mountain Man Ice Cream, at 99 South Shore Road, is run by the Robertson family including Myles and Austin Robertson, as well as Brianne Thomassen. (Sarah Simpson/Citizen)
Sweet new business opens its doors in Lake Cowichan

Mountain Man Ice Cream, located at 99 South Shore Rd.

Vandals burned a hole in the platform at the top of the Somenos Marsh Open Air Classroom early on the morning of Thursday, April 22. (Kevin Rothbauer/Citizen)
Arson closes Somenos Marsh viewing platform

Fletcher estimates the damage at more than $5,000.

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and United States President Joe Biden smile as they say farewell following a virtual joint statement in Ottawa, Tuesday, February 23, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Trudeau pledges to cut emissions by 40% to 45% by 2030, short of U.S. goal

Trudeau announced target during a virtual climate summit convened by U.S. President Joe Biden

Nic Hume and his fellow paramedic stopped to rescue the victim of an Oak Bay hit-and-run – a duck – at the end of their shift Thursday morning. (Nic Hume/Facebook)
B.C. paramedics don’t duck a chance to help someone in need

Ambulance duo end a long shift by helping a distressed duck in Victoria suburb

As the snow in Manning Park melts, searchers are able to get a little farther each day. Photo submitted
Family resumes search for son missing in B.C.’s Manning park since October

‘This is our child, and we don’t give up on our children,’ said mother of Jordan, Josie Naterer

A health-care worker prepares a dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine at a clinic in Toronto on Thursday, January 7, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette
Canada buys 65M Pfizer booster shots for protection against COVID-19 variants

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau says the deal with Pfizer includes options to add 30 million doses in both 2022 and 2023, and an option for 60 million doses in 2024

An early morning fire along Cameron Street has left two cats dead and two tenants homeless. (Jane Skrypnek/News Staff)
Early morning fire guts Victoria house, leaves 2 cats dead

Victoria Fire Department called out shortly before 2 a.m.

A plan flew over the Lower Mainland with a sign expressing some Canucks fans’ discontent with the team’s general manager. (Niqhil Velji - Twitter Screenshot)
#FireBenning movement gets off the ground in Metro Vancouver

Canucks fans raise enough money to fly banner over Metro Vancouver asking for team GM to be canned

The Better Business Bureau is reminding people to do their research before starting any home improvement projects this spring. (Black Press Media file photo)
Don’t get scammed on home improvements, warns Better Business Bureau

Scams typically involve paying cash upfront for jobs that never get done, says BBB

The freed osprey keeps a wary eye on its rescuers after being deposited on its nest. (Photo credit: Greg Hiltz)
Hydro crew in Ashcroft gets osprey rescue call-out they won’t soon forget

Bird was tangled in baling wire hanging from a hydro pole, necessitating a tricky rescue

Auto thief in black balaclava trying to break into car with screwdriver. (Pixabay photo)
Island hikers and park users warned to keep valuables in vehicles out of sight

Spring weather draws more hikers out to rural parking lots, where thieves are at work

Most Read