TORONTO, June 21, 2013 /CNW/ - Provincial and territorial ministers of
education join today with Canadians from across the country to
celebrate National Aboriginal Day.
Official observance of National Aboriginal Day was first established in
1996 by then Governor General Roméo LeBlanc as a day to honour the rich
cultural heritage of First Nation, Inuit, and Métis peoples and
underscore their important role in Canada's social, cultural, and
"National Aboriginal Day provides Canadians with the opportunity to
learn more about First Nation, Metis, and Inuit perspectives, wisdom,
cultures, and values," said the Honourable Ramona Jennex, Chair of the
Council of Ministers of Education, Canada (CMEC), and Minister of
Education and Early Childhood Development for Nova Scotia. "Aboriginal
peoples are an integral part of our past, our present, and our future.
Education ministers are committed to working with first peoples and
education stakeholders to ensure that future is brighter for all
CMEC is pleased to be active on several fronts in Aboriginal education.
In 2008, education ministers issued a ministerial declaration, Learn Canada 2020, which underscored the importance of Aboriginal learning, made it a key
priority of provincial and territorial education ministers, and
committed to eliminating the gap in academic achievement and graduation
rates between Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal students.
In 2009, CMEC held an unprecedented national summit on Aboriginal
education which brought together provincial and territorial ministers
responsible for education, leaders of the five national Aboriginal
organizations, more than 40 representatives of regional Aboriginal
organizations, representatives from the federal government, and
provincial and territorial ministers responsible for Aboriginal affairs
to discuss ways to improve Aboriginal outcomes in education. In 2011,
CMEC brought together a variety of stakeholders, including educators,
academics, governmental officials, and representatives of Aboriginal
organizations for the CMEC Educators' Forum on Aboriginal Education to share evidence and experiences of programs, policies, and practices
for student success in Aboriginal early-childhood and K-12 education.
CMEC's pan-Canadian collaborative work continues on a number of issues,
including regionally appropriate work on Aboriginal-education data
collection and research, teacher education, knowledge transfer among
all those involved in Aboriginal education, and ongoing discussion with
the federal government on Aboriginal education. This work complements
the many ongoing initiatives being taken by individual provinces and
territories, in cooperation with Aboriginal education stakeholders, to
make education a positive experience for Aboriginal learners.
Aboriginal Education will be on the agenda of the 101st CMEC meeting, which will be held July 4‒5, 2013, in Iqaluit, Nunavut.
Ministers of Education will be reviewing work at both the pan-Canadian
and jurisdictional levels on addressing the educational needs of First
Nation, Inuit, and Métis students.
Founded in 1967, CMEC is the collective voice of Canada's ministers of
education. It provides leadership in education at the pan-Canadian and
international levels and contributes to the exercise of the exclusive
jurisdiction of provinces and territories over education. For more
information, visit us at www.cmec.ca.
SOURCE: Council of Ministers of Education, Canada
For further information:
Tel.: 416-962-8100, ext. 259