Education is expected to assist students in the development of their personal identities and the achievement of social and economic success. Yet the aspirations of Aboriginal students have too often been thwarted by the very structures that are supposed to help them. Combining a research study, an extensive review of the literature, and an analysis of current trends, Schissel and Wotherspoon detail the harm done to Aboriginal children and their families-not only in the past, when residential schools explicitly set out to eliminate Aboriginal identities, but also in more recent years, when educational systems designed for the mainstream have relegated First Nations students to the sidelines. The authors find hope for the future in four experimental programs from Saskatchewan, in which severely stressed Aboriginal young people have found nourishment for their self-esteem in educational settings that take into account traditional culture and spiritual teachings, as well as academic achievement. Interviews with Aboriginal students themselves give additional depth to the author's findings.
Legacy of School for Aboriginal People
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