Federal education framework still a tool of forced assimilation, says Kitchenuhmaykoosib Inninuwug leader

October 19, 2016

Canada is intentionally underfunding First Nations schools as part of its historical attempt to force the assimilation of First Nations youth, according to the director of education in Kitchenuhmaykoosib Inninuwug. Located 600 kilometres north of Thunder Bay, the community reportedly receives $13K per student per year from the federal government, compared to a French Catholic school in Thunder Bay that receives $27K, although both are required to deliver the same provincial curriculum. “I don't think this is an accident. I think it's planned that way,” said the community’s director of education Bill Sainnawap. “I used to call it a failure system, a built in failure system.” CBC reports that the limited funds require students from the community to leave if they wish to pursue high school beyond Grade 10, a fact that residential school survivor Bill Morris believes is intended to eventually push the community off of its land. “That's the way the government works. They try to get rid of us,” said Morris. “Even my kids now—they want to get rid of us, in a way. It's land. It has to do with land and jurisdiction.” CBC