Priorities Statement of the CME
The following statement of priorities, which the Council deems to be a must for Nova Scotia to meet Mi’kmaq educational requirements, was approved during a meeting of the Council on Mi’kmaq Education, on May 2, 2008, in Halifax, NS:
The Council on Mi’kmaq Education views the creation and implementation of accurate, and mandatory, Mi’kmaq history courses within Nova Scotia’s schools as its top priority. Such is essential for removing from the sub-conscience of the province’s non-First Nation population the twisted systemic racist beliefs that have been instilled in them by a history of demonizing colonial propaganda. To change negative views to positive, farsighted changes in Education are necessary. The province of Nova Scotia has a moral responsibility that requires it to correct this historical wrong. Human decency demands it.
When giving consideration to our request for mandatory Mi’kmaq history courses, the Department of Education must keep in mind that the citizens of the Mi’kmaq First Nation cannot be lumped into the same pot as this province’s non-indigenous racial groups. This request is tied to the fact that Nova Scotia is the only homeland that our people have, whereas other groups can identify with African, Asian, Australian, and European homelands.
In line with the before-mentioned, the following have been established as the priorities of the Council on Mi’kmaq Education:
- To have included in the primary to grade 12 curricula a mandatory and accurate course on Mi’kmaq History for all grades;
- To have included in the B.E.D. curriculum a mandatory and accurate course on Mi’kmaq History;
- The early development of a new, modern and accurate Mi’kmaq Studies text;
- The Mi’kmaq Liaison Office at the Department of Education being staffed and fully operational by September 2008;
- The creation of a data bank that would be useful in:
- Identifying the number of Mi’kmaq race relations employees in the province’s educational system;
- Identifying the number of Mi’kmaq employed within the Department of Education as well as within other departments of the provincial government;
- Developing a process to employ more Mi’kmaq in positions within the public service;
- The establishment and implementation of a cultural sensitivity course for non-Mi’kmaq teachers;
- The establishment and implementation of a mandatory Mi’kmaq cultural sensitivity course for Department of Education employees; the completion of which would be needed to meet job performance evaluation requirements.