This was our group project for 2020=2021. We had so much fun working together that we almost forgot that we were apart.
Program Director Mary Wilber
The Indian Education Act of 1972, grants Federal funds educational programs for all American Indian and Alaska Native children in public school. These programs are intended to provide those children with programs that not only offer them the opportunity to succeed academically but to enrich their cultural lives as well.
How is the program funded?
Our program relies upon a grant from the Federal Government that is based upon the number of Native children that exists within the educational entity applying for the grant, in this case, the consortium of the Lake Washington, Bellevue and Northshore School Districts. The size of grants are determined by the number of children being served in the given community.
How does the program “fit” into the regular school program?
The program that is required by the Federal Government must be “comprehensive” in its scope in that it not only provides activities to meet the unique needs of American Indian and Alaska Native students, but also is consistent with and promotes the goals in the state and local improvement plans under Title III of the Goals 2000: Educate America Act, as well as other state standards and assessments.
How do we know if it works?
As with all government grants, assessment is required. After the determination and prioritization of the local needs of the applying agency have been determined and administered to, a year-end assessment is undertaken, which is then forwarded to the government.
How is the program carried out?
The program is guided by an administrator, who sits on an open committee of parents, teachers, and if appropriate, secondary students. The committee must be comprised of more than one-half parents of Indian children. This committee steers the program content as well as determines the best available talents and resources to implement the program activities.
The activities and services may include the following:
- Culturally related activities;
- Early childhood and family programs;
- Enrichment programs that focus on problem solving and cognitive skills development that directly support the attainment of state standards;
- Integrated educational services in combination with other programs;
- School-to-work activities;
- Activities to educate individuals concerning substance abuse;
- The acquisition of equipment to carry out the program.