National Chief Atleo to Visit the Winning Schools in AFN Student Video Contest

OTTAWA, May 6, 2013 /CNW/ - The Assembly of First Nations (AFN) congratulates all participants in the AFN Student Video contest.  Two schools have been selected and will receive a visit by National Chief Shawn a-in-chut Atleo and others in the coming weeks - Otter Nelson River School in Cross Lake, Manitoba and the iCount school in Moricetown, B.C.

AFN invited First Nation students in grades 1 to 12 to create videos about their schools as part of national education advocacy efforts supporting First Nation education. Students were asked to explain what they like about their school, how it's making a difference in their lives and what they would change to make their school even better.

"I congratulate all of the schools that submitted videos, especially the teachers and students who shared their stories. I encourage everyone to take the time to listen to all of the videos posted at www.afn.ca. It is so inspiring to hear and see the students' pride in their identity, culture and communities," said AFN National Chief Shawn A-in-chut Atleo. "These students deliver incredibly powerful messages with great creativity and energy. Their experiences and commitment to their schools must guide us now to ensure that every student is fully supported to achieve success."

"It is always so important to hear directly from the students about their education, their specific hopes and their needs. Every student deserves a safe, supportive and nurturing learning environment. Sadly this is not the case in too many of our communities. The youth themselves are showing us the way forward and their voices must be responded to by all of us - First Nations and all levels of government - to deliver fairness and excellence in education," said National Chief Atleo.

AFN Regional Chief Morley Googoo (Nova Scotia/Newfoundland), portfolio holder for Education, added: "Education remains a clear priority for all First Nations across the country. We are making strides and while there is still much to do to get this right for our children and our future, it was rewarding to hear the students' positive outlook on their schools. Many commented on the benefits of culture and language classes, outdoor education, and supportive teachers who make them think about their future. First Nations will not rest until we have created new systems and a better approach to First Nations education."

The National Chief will visit Otter Nelson River School in Manitoba on Monday, May 6, 2013 and iCount School in B.C. on Wednesday, May 15, 2013.

To view the six student videos, visit the AFN website at:
http://www.afn.ca/index.php/en/news-media/latest-news/afn-student-video-contest

The Assembly of First Nations is the national organization representing First Nations citizens in Canada. Follow AFN on Twitter @AFN_Comms, @AFN_Updates.

SOURCE: ASSEMBLY OF FIRST NATIONS

For further information:

Alain Garon AFN Bilingual Communications Officer 613-241-6789, ext. 382; 613-292-0857 or agaron@afn.ca

Jenna Young AFN Communications Officer 613-241-6789, ext. 401; 613-314-8157 or jyoung@afn.ca

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