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Ottawa, December 3, 2014 –Colleges and Institutes Canada (CICan) is proud to announce the launch of its ground-breaking Indigenous Education Protocol for Colleges and Institutes. This aspirational document supports colleges’ and institutes’ commitment to Indigenous education and provides a vision of how they can strive to improve their practices and better serve Indigenous peoples.

Effective today, CICan members representing 137 colleges, institutes, polytechnics and cegeps from across Canada are invited to sign on to the Protocol and adopt its seven principles. The Protocol underscores the importance of structures and approaches required to address Indigenous peoples’ learning needs and support self-determination and socio-economic development of Indigenous communities.

“As key providers of applied postsecondary education for Indigenous communities, colleges and institutes recognize that they have important responsibilities and obligations to Indigenous education,” says Denise Amyot, President and CEO of CICan. “This protocol will encourage our members to be more inclusive of Indigenous cultures and even more proactive in eliminating the barriers to education that many Indigenous learners still face.”

The Indigenous Education Protocol was developed by CICan’s Indigenous Education Committee, comprising college and institute representatives from across the provinces and territories, as well as through consultations held at the Serving Indigenous Learners and Communities Symposium in December 2013, and the CICan annual conferences in 2013 and 2014.

“As the President of BC’s Aboriginal Public Post-Secondary Institute, it has been an honour to Chair a National committee of dedicated educational leaders who share a passion for advancing Aboriginal education”, says Ken Tourand, CICan Indigenous Education Committee Chair and President of the Nicola Valley Institute of Technology. “The Indigenous protocol highlights opportunities ‎for Canada’s post-secondary institutes to meaningfully collaborate with First Nation communities. Enhancing relationships between First Nation communities and post-secondary providers will likely generate an environment of mutuality designed to encourage success among Aboriginal learners. I anticipate that post-secondary leaders across Canada will signify their commitment to the advancement of Aboriginal post-secondary education by signing the Indigenous Protocol and bringing it to life within their own institute and local communities.”

Colleges and Institutes Canada is the national and international voice of Canada’s publicly supported colleges, institutes and polytechnics. We work with industry and social sectors to train 1.5 million learners of all ages and backgrounds at campuses serving over 3,000 urban, rural and remote communities in Canada. The Association operates in 29 countries via 13 offices around the world.

 

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For more information contact:

Julien Abord-Babin
Senior Strategic Communications Officer
Colleges and Institutes Canada
613-746-2222 Ext. 3131
jabord-babin@collegesinstitutes.ca
Twitter:  @CollegeCan