Essay on The Education Of Aboriginal People

Essay on The Education Of Aboriginal People

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The education of Aboriginal people is a challenge that has been a concern for many years and is still an issue. However, it remains the best way young people can climb out of poverty. With the colonialization and the oppression of Aboriginals, there have been many lasting side effects that continue to be affecting the Aboriginal youth today. “While retention and graduation rates have improved among urban Aboriginal population, an educational gap still remains between Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal youth in urban settings” (Donovan, 127). Many suffer from a diminished self-worth, as they do not feel valued and feel inferior to their classmates. In this essay I am going to outline the reasons Aboriginals are struggling, discuss what is being done and provide some effective examples of programs in Canada. I argue the education system needs to adapt to the needs of the Aboriginal student by implementing effective strategies to help them increase grades and stay in school.
In Canada today more than “one-third of Aboriginal people haven 't earned a high school diploma, and only eight percent of Aboriginal people aged 25 to 64 hold university degree, compared to 23 percent of non-Aboriginals in the same age group who do”(Statistics Canada).
Barriers/ Challenges
1. Lack of connection to material
One of the reasons that Aboriginal students struggle in mainstream education, is because the curriculum material may not be in their first language and is typically does not follow Aboriginal teaching philosophy. For instance, in Canadian schools teaching methods and learning styles often differ from the traditions of Aboriginal groups. The educational model reflected in schools predominantly focuses on learning as an individualized, competitive, ...

... middle of paper ...

...children are in school with other Canadians, this part of the curriculum needs to be shared generally, as self-esteem grows when an appreciation of one’s background is shared by others.

The needs of Aboriginal youth are not being met in mainstream systems. Undoubtedly, with the high dropout rate of “7 out of 10 first nation youth drop out of school” (Donovan, 128), the school system is failing them. Across Canada only “23 percent of the Aboriginal population has their high school diploma” (Donovan, 129). Aboriginal people make up the youngest and fastest growing segment of our population, and yet many still have significantly less education than the general population.
As discussed earlier, mainstream education is misaligned with Aboriginal ways therefore, standardized testing creates a “pressure cooker atmosphere” many feel the stress which causes them to drop out.

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