News release

Mi'kmaw Kina'matnewey, Minister Sign Education Agreement

Jamie Muir, acting Education Minister, and Chief Deborah Robinson of the Mi'kmaw Kina'matnewey, signed an historic agreement that will improve educational opportunities for Nova Scotia's Mi'kmaw students today, Nov. 7.

Mi'kmaw Kina'matnewey is the organization responsible for Mi'kmaw education. The five-year agreement replaces existing tuition agreements between Mi'kmaw Kina'matnewey's 10-member bands and school boards, with a common tuition agreement between the organization and province.

"This new arrangement will foster a positive environment and begin a new relationship between the public school system and First Nation communities that will greatly benefit the 1,000 on-reserve students who attend Nova Scotia public schools," said Mr. Muir.

The agreement sets the foundation for a formal reporting structure between regional school boards and Mi'kmaw Kina'matnewey on student achievement, attendance, discipline and a range of other educational measures. It will also create an accountability framework so that bands and families can hold schools accountable for the money spent on educating their children.

The agreement also aims to better engage parents and the Mi'kmaw community in the public school system.

"This is an innovative education agreement between two governments that focuses on improving performance and accountability, co-operation, and increasing respect for language and culture," said Chief Robinson, vice-chair of Mi'kmaw Kina'matnewey,

The agreement offers the opportunity for increased band involvement and participation in the education of students.

"We will be able to better target initiatives and resources to meet the needs of students with the objective of improving the educational results of Mi'kmaw students," said Mr. Muir.

The education agreement also establishes a formula for the calculation of tuition that will be paid to school boards educating on-reserve Mi'kmaw students attending public schools.

In the first three years of the agreement, boards will be funded $6,100 per student which will be indexed to the Consumer Price Index. The remaining two years will be determined by a formula based on the provincial cost per student.

FOR BROADCAST USE:

The province of Nova Scotia and the Mi'kmaw Kina'matnewey, [key-nah-MAT-nuh-way] signed an historic agreement that will improve educational opportunities for Nova Scotia's Mi'kmaw students today (November 7th).

Mi'kmaw Kina'matnewey is the organization responsible for aboriginal education.

The five-year agreement replaces existing tuition agreements between Mi'kmaw Kina'matnewey's 10-member bands and school boards, with a common tuition agreement between the organization and the province.

Acting Education Minister Jamie Muir says the agreement will result in a positive new relationship between the public school system and First Nation communities that will benefit the 1,000 on-reserve students who attend Nova Scotia d public schools.

The agreement sets the foundation for a formal reporting structure between regional school boards and Mi'kmaw Kina'matnewey on student achievement, attendance, discipline and a range of other educational measures. It will also create an accountability framework so that bands and families can hold schools accountable for the money spent on educating their children.

The agreement also aims to better engage parents and the Mi'kmaw community in the public school system.

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Media Contact:

Peter McLaughlin
Department of Education 902-424-8307 E-mail: