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INUVIK, NORTHWEST TERRITORIES–(April 15, 2008) – The Canada Millennium Scholarship Foundation is pleased to announce its partnership with Inuit Tapiriit Kanatami (ITK) on the first ever National Inuit Education Summit, which will bring together Inuit leaders from April 15 to 17 in Inuvik to discuss the barriers and challenges to Inuit education, as well as a strategy for progress.Recent research has shown an “education gap” in Inuit communities, with only about half of Inuit people completing a high school diploma. Nevertheless, the Inuit population is growing rapidly, with 57% under the age of 25, while the Arctic region is experiencing a heightened level of economic growth and political development that is outpacing the availability of skilled and educated labour. Clearly, at a time of increasing Inuit control of governments and boards of education in all four Inuit regions, there exists an unprecedented opportunity for substantive policy development in early childhood education, K-12 and post-secondary training.
The Foundation supported the development of research that will fuel discussion at the summit, which aims to establish a national strategy for Inuit education by developing plans of action in relation to the following six themes:
- Capacity building
- Graduating bilingual students
- Building post-secondary success
- Mobilizing partners in education
- Investing in what we teach and how we teach
- Collecting and sharing information.
“The Foundation is proud to support the development and dissemination of knowledge intended to help Inuit students overcome barriers and make successful transitions through all levels of education,” said Norman Riddell, the Foundation’s executive director and chief executive officer. “Partnerships with organizations such as ITK will form an integral part of the Foundation’s legacy in fostering the development of strategies that will help provide all Canadians with the opportunities to receive the skills and training they will need to prosper in a rapidly changing economy and society.”
The summit is also supported by the Inuit Relations Secretariat of Indian and Northern Affairs Canada and the partnership of the Canadian Council on Learning’s Aboriginal Learning Knowledge Centre.
The Canada Millennium Scholarship Foundation is a private, independent organization created by an act of Parliament in 1998, with a mandate to deliver bursaries and scholarships to Canadian post-secondary students until the end of 2009. The Foundation provides students with opportunities to pursue the post-secondary education they need to prepare themselves for the future. To date, it has awarded more than 900,000 bursaries and scholarships, worth some $2.6 billion, to Canadian post-secondary students.
For more information, please contact
Canada Millennium Scholarship Foundation
Communications Advisor (Research)
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