Memorandum of Understanding for First Nation Education in the Saskatoon Tribal Council Catchment Area

Memorandum of Understanding for First Nation Education in the Saskatoon Tribal Council Catchment Area  Format PDF (169 Kb, 6 pages)

Memorandum of Understanding for First Nation Education in the Saskatoon Tribal Council Catchment Area (Hereinafter referred to as the "MOU")

Between the Parties:

Saskatoon Tribal Council
as represented by the Saskatoon Tribal Council Inc. Board of Directors
(Hereinafter referred to as "STC")


Her Majesty the Queen in Right of Canada
as represented by the Minister of Indian Affairs and Northern Development
(Hereinafter referred to as "DIAND")


Her Majesty the Queen in Right of Saskatchewan
as represented by the Minister of Education
(Hereinafter referred to as "Ministry of Education")


As guided by Elders from the seven member Nations,

We recognize children are a gift from the Creator to be honoured with love, care and respect and that education is an inherent right granted by the Creator.

As partners in education, we are entrusted with the responsibility to ensure appropriate, relevant and respectful learning opportunities for all students.

This Memorandum of Understanding will serve as an Education Bundle to guide parties in assisting students through their educational journey and is to be honoured and protected by each of our First Nations, STC, DIAND and the Ministry of Education.


māmawohkamātotāhk kiskinohamākēwin āniskē-pimātisak ohci
(maamuwohkumaatotaak kiskinohumaakaywin aaniskay-pimaatisuk ootsi)

Let's join forces in education for future generations.


Nanādok pimosēwin
(nuh naa dohk pih moh say win)

Just as the Sun follows different paths on its journey, we may follow numerous paths as we move toward a common vision of an Education Bundle.


Oyate oaye okodakiciye
(oh-yah-day oh-ah-yea oh-kxoh-dah-gee-chee-yea)

Moving ahead by working together.


Whereas, at the time of Treaty signing, the Crown and the First Nations recognized that an ongoing treaty relationship would be established for "as long as the sun shines, the grass grows and the rivers flow;"

Whereas, the Constitution Act (1982), Section 35 recognizes and affirms the existing Aboriginal and Treaty rights in Canada;

Whereas, the Parties are committed to working collaboratively, on a government to government basis, for the benefit of Saskatchewan learners;

Whereas, the Parties acknowledge their respective mandates and authorities in relation to this Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) and agree it is a statement of intent by the Parties that is not legally binding;

Whereas, this MOU respects the jurisdiction and local autonomy of education systems both on and off reserve and does not interfere with the rights or interests of the Parties;

Whereas, this MOU will be guided by First Nation practices on privacy and information management, while respecting federal and provincial privacy and information management policy and legislation, and in the spirit of collaboration to improve First Nation education outcomes;

Whereas, the Parties agree this MOU is without prejudice to their respective positions on any future constitutional or other matters pertaining to First Nation peoples;

Whereas, the Parties agree on the importance of establishing and maintaining processes that are open and inclusive;

Whereas, the STC and its member First Nations have previously formed a number of beneficial and long-standing partnerships with provincial school divisions to promote, strengthen and facilitate First Nation education;

Whereas, all parties wish to build on this good work to expand the activities of existing education agreements and to create agreements where none have existed.

Now therefore the parties agree that:

  1. The primary objective of this MOU is to enhance education outcomes for First Nation students attending either First Nation or provincial schools and to provide non-First Nation students with a greater understanding of First Nation communities.
  2. The means through which the parties will pursue this objective is partnership arrangements between STC affiliated schools and proximate provincial school divisions.
  3. The STC First Nations participating in this partnership include Mistawasis First Nation, Muskoday First Nation, Muskeg Lake Cree Nation, Yellow Quill First Nation, Whitecap Dakota First Nation, One Arrow First Nation and Kinistin Saulteaux Nation.
  4. As in the case with the STC's existing partnership agreements, new partnership agreements will be characterized by such conventions as:
    • joint planning and priority setting for joint initiatives;
    • pooling of resources and opportunities;
    • information-sharing protocols.
  5. The priorities for partnership development are:
    1. Student Transition and Retention;
      In order for students to complete grade twelve and post secondary schooling, there must be supports in place to ensure that students attend school on a regular basis and that there is a smooth transition among educational institutions. These supports would include, but not be limited to, transition supports, foundational and ongoing assessment of learning/skill, data management and collection, and the regular review of learning outcomes.
    2. Family and Community Support/lnvolvement;
      Both family and community support, including First Nation Elders, are critical factors in supporting improved student education outcomes. Family and community supports would include, but not be limited to, community liaison workers, wrap-around programming, parent program sessions, Elder guidance, and access to transport and services.
    3. Professional and Resource Development.
      Shared professional development and resources, both human and curricular, support the implementation of cultural programming, curriculum resource development, program initiatives, and instructional strategies with respect to First Nation history, culture, language and spirituality. This sharing would include, but not be limited to, common professional development sessions, instructional strategies, resources, documenting the history of the First Nation communities, and supporting First Nation language programs.
  6. The parties agree that they will be guided in their joint work by the following principles and practices, namely that:

    1. Treaties are a fundamental part of the relationship between First Nations, Canada and Saskatchewan;
    2. It is important to work collaboratively to support and continuously improve education outcomes for First Nation students;
    3. It is important to recognize the diversity of First Nation peoples, communities, language, culture, traditions and spiritual practices;
    4. First Nation students are entitled to equitable access to quality education in both First Nation and provincial schools;
    5. First Nation Elders and knowledge keepers have a relevant role in supporting culturally appropriate education;
    6. Children acquire knowledge by watching, listening and doing, and adults are responsible for encouraging and guiding them in all those activities;
    7. All students in Saskatchewan should have an understanding ofFirst Nation culture;
    8. Representatives from STC, DIAND and the Ministry of Education will meet once during each of the four seasons (June, September, December, March) to review and discuss the MOU.

Signed on behalf of the Saskatoon Tribal Council, as represented by the Tribal Chief

Tribal Chief Felix Thomas

Signed on behalf of Her Majesty the Queen in Right of Canada, as represented by the Minister of Indian Affairs and Northern Development

The Honorable John Duncan

Signed on behalf of Her Majesty the Queen in Right of Saskatchewan, as represented by the Minister of Education

The Honorable Donna Harpauer

Signed at Whitecap in the province of Saskatchewan on the 14th day of Oct. 2010

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