SD 72 to pilot language immersion program at kindergarten level

January 9, 2019

School District 72 in British Columbia will be piloting a Liq’wala/Kwak’wala language immersion program for students at Ripple Rock Elementary School in September 2019. The two-year pilot program will consist of a kindergarten curriculum in both English and Kwak’wala, to be taught by a district kindergarten teacher and a Kwak’wala language teacher. In future years, the program could expand to include Grade 1 students if there is sufficient interest. “We all know that language really is the foundation of culture,” said Assistant Superintendent Nevenka Fair. “We appreciate the board’s support for exploring this. The journey so far has been really exciting.” Trustee Daryl Hagen added that this project is “where we need to be spending our money” and expressed hope in seeing the program provide a model for other districts in the province. The development of the pilot project was overseen by Fair, SD 72 principal of Indigenous education Greg Johnson, Curtis Wilson of the Wei Wai Kum, Chief Brian Assu of We Wai Kai, and Laichwiltach language revitalization consultant Dee Cullon. Campbell River Mirror (BC)