The Need

The Value of Indigenous Culture, Knowledge & Teaching

Achievement gaps in education outcomes for Alaska Native students have existed for many decades. Alaska Native teachers, Indigenous scholars and other academic researchers have long argued that the education of Alaska Native students requires systemic change that include schools that are Native controlled, Native administered and Native in approach and practice. While many Alaskan schools have incorporated specific recommendations to include Native language education and other aspects of Native culture as part of the curriculum, these efforts have been uneven and limited. Students have benefited, but far too many are still not receiving the kind of education and skills they need to prepare them for life. Significant disparities in attendance, academic scores, graduation, and dropout rates persist.