Indian Education

The Office of Indian Education provides information, resources, support and oversight to district, charter, and tribal contract schools throughout the state of Minnesota, and is responsible for or collaborates with the following programs:
 
  • American Indian Education Aid and Indian Education Program Plans
  • Minnesota Indian Teacher Training Program (MITTP)
  • Tribal Contract School Equalization
  • Tribal Early Childhood Family Education
  • American Indian Parent Advisory Committees (AIPAC)
  • ESSA Tribal Consultation
  • The Ethel Curry American Indian Leadership Scholarship
Our goal is to provide meaningful, intentional, and targeted educational opportunities to every American Indian student, while at the same time fostering cultural identity and pride. We also provide education and training to district staff and American Indian Parent Advisory Committees (AIPACs). We work closely with the Tribal Nations Education Committee (TNEC) and the Minnesota Indian Education Association (MIEA) and consult and collaborate with these 11 distinct Ojibwe and Dakota Communities:
 
  • Bois Forte Band of Chippewa
  • Fond du Lac Band of Lake Superior Chippewa
  • Grand Portage Band of Ojibwe
  • Leech Lake Band of Ojibwe
  • Lower Sioux Indian Community
  • Mille Lacs Band of Ojibwe
  • Prairie Island Indian Community
  • Red Lake Nation
  • Shakopee Mdewakanton Sioux Community
  • Upper Sioux Indian Community
  • White Earth Nation

Tribal Consultation Guidance  

Consultation creates opportunities for local educational agencies (LEAs) and tribal leaders to work together on behalf of American Indian students. Consultation allows affected LEAs to gather input from Tribal Nations, fostering the collaboration that is a critical part of improving academic outcomes for American Indian students. Tribal Consultation Guidance provides information on how LEAs can meaningfully consult with Tribal Nations.

Initial Tribal Consultation meetings should start taking place when meeting times and dates have been agreed upon by appropriate officials. The Consultation Foundations: Your First Meeting document outlines what might occur at your first Tribal Consultation meeting. It is suggested that you start with introductions, shared beliefs, and group norms. This foundation will allow for your group to agree on a process for meetings and decision-making. A sample ESSA Process Agreement is provided below, and is intended to help committees come to an agreement about the process the group will adhere to. We have also provided Effective Communication Tips and a sample of a decision-making strategy.

Please review all of the following materials in preparation for this process:

Meaningful Local Engagement Under ESSA: A Handbook for LEA and School Leaders
Consultation Foundations: Your First Meeting 
ESSA Process Agreement
Effective Communication Tips

American Indian Education Aid

American Indian Education Aid is administered by the Minnesota Department of Education and provides per-pupil funding to eligible school districts, charter schools, and Bureau of Indian Education (BIE) tribal contract schools, reaching American Indian students statewide. The purpose of this program is to increase academic achievement, decrease the drop-out rate, and to improve the school climate of American Indian students in a culturally appropriate manner. This program addresses five specific goal areas, with a special focus on ensuring that all children are ready for school, all racial and economic achievement gaps between students are closed, and that all students are college and career ready.

To determine if your district, charter, or tribal school is eligible for this funding, please review the  FY18 American Indian Education Aid Estimate spreadsheet to see if your district has been identified by MDE as having 20 or more American Indian students. If your district qualifies, please review each document provided below. If after reviewing the spreadsheet you find your district's state American Indian student count to be incorrect, please download the American Indian State Student Count Appeal Process document to review next steps.

American Indian Education Aid: Background and Guidance
Letter of Intent - Due Annually on June 1
Indian Education Program Plan: Template - Due Annually on October 1
Indian Education Program Plan Certification Statement - Due Annually on October 1
American Indian Parent Advisory Committee Representative Roster - Due Annually on October 1
Indian Education Program Plan: Sample Plan

Submit all required items to mde.indian-education@state.mn.us. If you have questions about this process, please call 651-582-8280.

American Indian Parent Advisory Committee

Minnesota Statutes, section 124D.78, requires that all Minnesota districts and tribal schools with 10 or more American Indian students have an American Indian Parent Advisory Committee (AIPAC). These committees serve in an advisory role to their school/district and help ensure that American Indian students are receiving culturally relevant and equitable educational opportunities. They are critical to the achievement and success of American Indian students statewide.

Please review the  FY18 American Indian Education Aid Estimate spreadsheet to determine if your district, charter, or tribal school has been identified by MDE as having 10 or more American Indian students. If your district qualifies, you are required to submit formal compliance documentation that includes an AIPAC Resolution of Concurrence or Non-concurrence as well as an up-to-date AIPAC Representative Roster. All items are due annually March 1. Please remit your items to the Office of Indian Education.

American Indian Parent Advisory Committee/District Compliance Documentation
American Indian Parent Advisory Committee Representative Roster
 
Submit all required items to Office of Indian Education. If you do not have an AIPAC or are new to this process, its expectations and requirements, please call 651-582-8280.

Ethel Curry American Indian Leadership Scholarship

The Ethel Curry American Indian Leadership Scholarship (ECS) is an annual award program that aids American Indian students in their pursuit of higher education opportunities. Awards generally range from $1,000-$4,000 per academic year, but may vary. Applications may be submitted annually from March 1 to May 31. Applications received outside of this time frame will not be accepted. Please carefully review the eligibility requirements found within the application packet.
 

Eligibility requirements and full details.

Download application packet.

If you have questions about this scholarship program, please call Kristen Aeikens at 651-582-8558.

American Indian Literature

A Youth and Young Adult Core Book Collection: Connecting to Minnesota English Language Arts Standards Created by the Minnesota American Indian Task Force and St. Catherine University Master of Library and Information Science Program's LIS 7190 Social Justice and Children/YA Literature course, this resource list provides titles and annotated bibliographies for American Indian-authored books connected to the Minnesota English Language Arts standards. This document will be revised on a yearly basis to reflect new books, out-of-print titles, or back-in-print titles. Visit Birchbark Books to view a list of books and prices.

District and School Self-Assessment for Implementing Indian Education

The Office of Indian Education is dedicated to supporting districts and schools to better serve the needs of American Indian students. As such we are providing a Self-Assessment Rubric for your use. This voluntary rubric will increase the capacity of teachers, Indian educators, and district leaders to create culturally responsive and inclusive educational environments. It is designed to improve organizational, instructional and material capacity for practices that support American Indian students in the state of Minnesota.
 

Indian Education Curriculum