The devolution of post secondary student support program to First Nations - I am not the right kind of Indian
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The purpose of this thesis is to examine impacts of devolution of post secondary education focusing on First Nations in Canada. I will critically examine the impacts of devolution and education policy in relation to First Nation administration of the post secondary education program. I argue that the issue of post secondary education as a First Nation treaty right is at the center of discord in relation to education policy. The nature and scope of post secondary education as a treaty right continues to be an unresolved issue between First Nations' and the Federal Government of Canada. In the 1960s, the Department of Indian Affairs and Northern Development (DIAND) administered a successful post secondary program resulting in increased numbers of First Nation students overall in college, technical and university populations. The policy of the time was to create conditions for First Nations to increase access to higher education. In time, the direction of the policy would change as in the 1980s the government's fiduciary responsibilities devolved post secondary education to First Nations. Devolution of programs and services provided the rationale for greater self-control for First Nations to train their own labour force. The process of devolution, however, has not benefited most First Nations in terms of the amount of funding available for the delivery and administration of programs and services. Rather, insufficient budget allocations resulted in some First Nation administrations inheriting a deficit budget for programs and services. An examination of the Indian Act provides evidence to the state's larger project of moral regulation within its education policy. The thesis provides a view of how First Nations have internalized limitations contained within social policies of the Indian Act. First Nations are faced with challenges in educating, training and securing employment for their band membership. Due to the nature of the funding, First Nations are forced to make decisions on which band members can access programs and services. Moreover, when examining the impacts of defining who is the right kind of Indian to educate, First Nations education policy demonstrates the internalization of what is the right kind of Indian to educate and train by the nature and scope of their criteria. First Nations are in control of training their own labour force and developing criteria on who is the right kind of Indian to educate.
DegreeMaster of Arts (M.A.)
CommitteeSchissel, Bernard; Garcea, Joseph; Zong, Li
First Nations -- government