Nunavut government looks at establishing university, standardizing written Inuktitut

March 25, 2015

Education was a hot topic at the recent sitting of Nunavut’s legislative assembly. Education Minister Paul Quassa announced that the territory is moving forward with plans to explore the creation of a university in the territory. Quassa said they are working on an “options” paper that explores various possibilities for a university, including a stand-alone university, a university college, a pan-territorial university, an Inuit Nunangat university, or some combination of these. A workshop for stakeholders is planned for the near future, and Quassa hopes to present a plan and concept at the spring assembly. Quassa also announced that the government is looking into standardizing the Inuktitut writing system used in schools across the country. Inuktitut is currently taught in both Roman orthography and syllabics, depending on the region, but Quassa said that standardizing the use of Roman orthography “has the potential to build an environment where students would be better equipped for learning more than one language.” The territorial government has the approval of the Inuit Uqausinginnik Taiguusiliuqtiit language authority to explore the benefits of standardizing the written language system, and will move forward on the first, exploratory phase. CBC (1) | CBC (2) | CBC (3) | Nunatsiaq Online (1) | Nunatsiaq Online (2)