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Supports for Students

Supports for Students Indigenous Education (K-12)

Indigenous Education (K-12)

Oki, Da​​​​nit'ada, Umba-watich, Tawnshi, Tansi, Bonjour, Hello

The Calgary Board of Education (CBE) is committed to acknowledging and supporting the implementation of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC) 94 Calls to Action specific to education. Namely, we commit to supporting improved achievement, equity, and well-being for students who self-identify as Indigenous, and creating opportunities for all students, staff, and school communities to engage in practices that facilitate reconciliation.

To meet these commitments, the CBE Indigenous Education Holistic Lifelong Learning Framework positions us to develop the professional capacity of all CBE staff to work towards achieving the ​CBE Education Plan, 2021-24 key outcome: Students who self-identify as Indigenous are supported to experience improved achievement and well-being through relevant key actions:

  • implement CBE Indigenous Education Holistic Lifelong Learning Framework;
  • offer professional learning for all CBE staff to acquire and apply foundational knowledge about First Nations, Métis and Inuit for the benefit of all students, staff, and the system as a whole;
  • acknowledge and support the implementation of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission Calls to Action;
  • enhance the collection and use of holistic data to monitor achievement and well-being for students who self-identify as Indigenous;
  • build and sustain relationships with Indigenous parents/caregivers; and
  • collaborate with Indigenous Elders, leaders, organizations, and community members to establish strategic policy directions in support of Indigenous student achievement and well-being.​

These key actions will be achieved across the CBE via:

The Indigenous Education Holistic Lifelong Learning Framework

The Indigenous Education Holistic Lifelong Learning Framework sets out the structure of foundational knowledge (four domains) and the underlying attributes essential to ensuring our success as an organization in achieving these key actions over three years and beyond. The framework is not a “how-to” guide for Indigenous Education or a recipe for closing gaps. Rather, it provides a foundation upon which individual staff members, teams, schools (including students and community), service units, and our district can meaningfully position and deepen our individual and collective knowledge, decisions, and actions to meet the holistic needs of all students.

The Indigenous Education Holistic Lifelong Learning Framework expands on the Indigenous Education Holistic Lifelong Learning Visual (shown below) that was inspired by the UNESCO Four Pillars of Education (1996), the work of the Canadian Council on Learning (CCL) (2007), and knowledge shared by Indigenous Elders and Knowledge Keepers. Passed on through stories, Elders and Knowledge Keepers have offered significant wisdom and guidance to design a framework representative of traditional and contemporary Indigenous ways of being, belonging, doing, and knowing.

Indigenous Education Team

The CBE Indigenous Education Team provides leadership and support across the district, working closely with CBE service units, schools (including students and families), and the Indigenous community. The Indigenous Education Team includes:​

  • 1 Education Director
  • 1 System Principal
  • 1 System Assistant Principal
  • 2 Learning Specialists
  • 4​ Diversity & Learning Support Advisors
  • 17 Indigenous Education Strategists
  • 1 Indigenous Well-Being Strategist

Acknowledgement of the Land

Elders have taught us it's important to acknowledge the land where we gather and the First Peoples who traditionally lived here. It shows respect for people, their contributions and their ways of being, belonging, doing, and knowing, which are reflected through the stories and songs that have lived on this land for thousands of years. We are making this acknowledgment to demonstrate our commitment to work together as a community in laying the foundation for reconciliation through education.​

Acknowledging the Land

The CBE Board of Trustees starts every public Board meeting with a verbal acknowledgement of the land and its First People. CBE schools and service units acknowledge the land where we gather throughout the school year, including at the beginning and end of each school year, during significant celebrations, such as a graduation, and to open system, area and school meetings. Through intentional work around learning why we acknowledge the land, staff and students have been engaging in critical reflection to move beyond reading the CBE Land Acknowledgement as a script to identifying personal and professional connections, and then sharing commitments to engaging in active work to advance the process of Canadian reconciliation.​

Indigenous Education Focus School Communities

The CBE currently offers two Indigenous Education Focus​ school programs located at Niitsitapi Learning Centre and Piitoayis Family School. Find out more about each of these programs by clicking the links below.​

Elder Advisory Council​

The CBE values the wisdom and guidance of Indigenous Elders and Knowledge Keepers. Though the CBE Elder Advisory Council, for more that 10 years we have gathered with Elders and Knowledge Keepers to learn, plan and work together on behalf of the Indigenous students we serve and support.


In addition to supports provided for all students, the CBE provides enhanced supports for First Nations, Métis and Inuit students who have self-identified their status through the Alberta Education First Nations, Métis or Inuit Self-Identification. First Nations, Métis and Inuit students can voluntarily self-declare their Indigenous ancestry upon registration into the CBE on the student registration form or the annual verification form. This identification will carry forward each year until such time as parents request it to be removed. For more information, see Alberta Education Aboriginal Student Self-Declaration Information for Parents and Guardians​.

How do I learn more about Indigenous Education?

To learn more about Indigenous Education in the CBE, email This email account is monitored weekly with a reply time of 2-3 work days.

If you are a parent and want to discuss your child’s learning needs, including how to access support from the Indigenous Education Team, please contact your child’s teacher or school principal.​​

 Contact Us

Indigenous Education Team​​​

Last modified: 3/15/2023 10:43 AM
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