Two Saskatchewan First Nations to participate in national literacy project
- EFN Staff | October 08, 2018
Two First Nations schools have been selected to join the Martin Family Initiative’s (MFI) Models Schools Literacy Project. Moosomin and Beardy’s and Okemasis First Nation were amongst many applicants across Canada to apply for this project last November. The purpose of the project is to ensure that First Nations students can read and write well enough by the end of Grade 3 to support continued school success.
Moosomin School Principal Julia Johnston said being part of the MFI will have a great impact on their students.
“For the past 5 years, our literacy scores have been so low and were probably the lowest in the district. We made significant gains in literacy last year but our students are still experiencing academic difficulty when entering high school,” said Johnston in a media release. “I now have great hope for the students attending Moosomin School. I am positive that we will be able to give them the foundation to successfully finish high school and go on to higher education. This is our goal!”
For the next six years, Moosomin and Beardy’s & Okemasis First Nation schools along with their communities will continue their ongoing initiatives in early literacy and work in partnership with MFI and the other Model Schools. The partnership will include continued professional learning already in place at the school, and enhancing resources for students, school staff, and leaders. Innovative use of technology enables the schools to work together, learning and sharing their best practices in early literacy education across time, distance, and First Nations.
“Chief Beardy Memorial Elementary School has been working towards ensuring all of our students learn to read and write according to their age and grade level. This has been a struggle for both the students and the teachers in past years,” said Candace Scott, the Director of Education. “With the Model Schools Literacy Project and further dedication from the Principal and staff, we can move forward to provide quality literacy instruction for all our students.”
The MFI was established in 2008 to develop and facilitate strategies to improve elementary and secondary school outcomes for First Nations, Inuit, and Metis students across Canada. The initiative has a number of key on-going projects in both First Nations and provincially funded schools.
Moosomin First Nation is located 40 kilometres north of North Battleford and their school have about 250 students. Beardy’s and Okemasis First Nation is over 80 km north of Saskatoon and their elementary school has approximately 160 students.