Treaty Education in Saskatchewan in an Era of Reconciliation
Gallays, Jennifer Lee
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In 2008, Treaty Education was mandated for every classroom across all grade levels in the province of Saskatchewan. This qualitative research involved semi-structured one-on-one interviews with 11 teachers, all of whom were highly invested in Treaty Education, from Saskatoon, Regina, and Prince Albert, Saskatchewan. The study’s main goal was to determine the supports for teachers and the main obstacles they face for Treaty Education. Treaty Education is embedded across all curricular areas, and to help in this endeavour, the Office of the Treaty Commissioner (OTC) created a Treaty resource kit in 2008 for all grade levels and provided them for every school in the province. A comprehensive review of the relevant literature and content analysis of the Treaty resource kit was undertaken to triangulate the data. The teacher-participants shared their thoughts on the resources made available to them, the supports they need, and the obstacles they face with teaching Treaty Education. The study found that the Treaty Education kit is increasingly not utilized and participants believed resources needed to be updated with better and more appropriate scope-and sequencing. They also described how they approach concepts of power and privilege in their Treaty Education pedagogy. Participants who employed an anti-racist approach to Treaty Education periodically encountered resistance from White students and parents. Participants who had a supportive administrator were more likely to engage confidently in Treaty Education. In conclusion, Treaty Education would be greatly supported by an alignment of curriculum and the creation and aggregation of appropriate resources for student use. Treaty Education should include anti-racist approaches so that students learn about the structures that marginalize and oppress Indigenous peoples. Professional development should aim to help White educators develop healthy racial identities and cultural competency. Additionally, professional development for teachers that focuses on power and privilege will be necessary in moving Treaty Education forward. The Office of the Treaty Commissioner, the Saskatchewan Ministry of Education, Saskatchewan school divisions, and provincial teacher education programs will find the study’s conclusions useful in moving forward.
DegreeMaster of Education (M.Ed.)
CommitteeCottrell , Michael; McVittie, Janet; Miller, Dianne; Tunison, Scott
Copyright DateApril 2020
Keywords: Treaty Education, Indigenous education, teacher education, teacher professional development, social justice education, anti-racist education, curriculum development.