As part of our commitment to provide school district administrators with resources and guidance on federal program compliance and administration, we regularly publish blogs featuring guest writers. We are honored to feature a co-written article between TransACT Executive Director of Federal Compliance and State Relationships, Dr. Holbrook, and his former colleague Keja Nokomis Whiteman,
an enrolled member of the Turtle Mountain Band of Chippewa Indians discussing the importance of incorporating cultural history to support positive learning outcomes for Native Americans.
I was motivated to initiate the writing of this blog when I saw a news story via Politico about the return of the remains of four Native American children from the graveyard associated with the Carlisle Indian Industrial School, one of the boarding schools that were part of past attempts to forcibly assimilate Native Americans into the dominant American culture. The mortality rate for Native American students at this school was approximately 2%. The school operated from 1879 through 1918 and over that time period housed about 10,000 students.