Perceptions of the important tasks for the school in Mackenzie Delta communities of the Western Arctic
Bunz, George Albert
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This investigation was concerned with demonstrating a model for determining goal priorities in a culturally pluralistic school region in the Western Arctic. The investigation attempted to discover the relative importance of goals and the relative level of goal achievement by the school as perceived by teachers, students and lay citizens of four neighboring communities of the Mackenzie Delta. The study also attempted to ascertain the level of meaningful involvement of participants in the goals study exercises. The model was essentially that developed by Birnie (1976) of the University of Saskatchewan. Birnie's model was modified for use in the North and field-tested in a culturally pluralistic community in Saskatchewan. The main features of the instrument were its forced ranking technique and a set of goal statements written in the vernacular of the lay citizens of the communities. The sample consisted of 335 people from the communities of Inuvik, Tuktoyaktuk, Aklavik, and Fort McPherson. Sub-groups included native and non-native respondents, teacher assistants, education committee members and major cultural groups. Variables included highest level of education attained, sex, age, occupation, and duration of life in the North. The goals study model was found to have potential for involving the people of the communities, students and teachers in meaningful dialogue about the important tasks for the school. The study determined that there were similarities and differences in key areas affecting the long term direction of school programming.