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American Indian/Alaska Native Education

Native American child students graduating

Introduction

That state we now call Oregon has been the homeland of diverse Native peoples since time immemorial. Their descendants, and Native people from throughout the United States, continue to live and thrive here.Developing an understanding of the diverse lifeways of today’s Native people and the legacy of our nation’s growth offers all people the opportunity to develop a shared future.

Historically, American Indian/Alaska Native Education is a rocky path. Many factors contribute to the Academic Achievement Gap that exists between American Indian/Alaska Native learners and their peers. Whether Native students are dropping out or stepping out, the result is the same, low employment rates, depressed economic development in Indian Country, separatism, and poverty.

In September 2017, ODE’s Office of Accountability, Research, and Information Services prepared the American Indian/Alaska Native Students in Oregon: A Review of Key Indicators report, updated in March 2020, to further conversations about improving outcomes for Oregon’s American Indian student population.

Today

The Native population is about 1.4% of the total population in Oregon. American Indian/Alaska Native (AI/AN) and Hawaiian Native students are potentially in every classroom and every district. Oregon is a national leader in adopting a comprehensive plan developed by Native education leaders. The 2020-2025 AI/AN Student Success Plan aligns to the strategic goals and key efforts of the Oregon Department of Education. The 2020-2025 plan focuses on eleven (11) educational objectives with accompanying strategies and measureable outcomes.

The Oregon Department of Education promotes active Tribal communication through the Indian Education Advisor to the Deputy Superintendent. Executive Order 96-30 was issued by the Governor of the State of Oregon in 1996, it established State Government-to-Government Relations with the nine (9) federally recognized Tribes in Oregon. The purpose of the formal relationship was to improve services and develop avenues for consultation. Under EO 96-30 the Government to Government Education Cluster was established.

Part C Title VI of the “Every Student Succeeds Act” (ESSA) of 2015 details the national expectations to provide a quality education for American Indian, Alaska and Hawaiian Native students. There are federal grant programs to 1) support the efforts of local educational agencies to meet the culturally related educational needs of Native students so such students can meet academic standards; 2) ensure that students gain knowledge and understanding of Native communities, languages, Tribal histories, traditions and cultures, and 3) to ensure that school staff who serve Native students have the ability to provide culturally appropriate and effective instruction

Office of Indian Education Updates













Contact the Office of Indian Education

April Campbell, Director: April.Campbell@ode.oregon.gov

Renee Roman Nose, Native American Student Success Coordinator: Renee.RomanNose@ode.oregon.gov

Brent Spencer, Indian Education Coordinator: Brent.Spencer@ode.oregon.gov

Brandon Culbertson, Indian Education Engagement Coordinator: Brandon.Culbertson@ode.oregon.gov

Raina Reece, Executive Support Specialist: Raina.Reece@ode.oregon.gov