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UN Forum on Indigenous Issues 2015



About the Indigenous Education Initiative (IEI)

The IEI is a five-year venture to create and mobilize knowledge for uptake in policy that reflects and respects the educational needs and aspirations of Aboriginal peoples and enriches education for all Canadians.

The strategic objectives of this Initiative are to:

Position OISE and the University of Toronto as the global leader in Indigenous education research

Establish effective partnerships with Indigenous organizations, governmental and non-governmental organizations, and the private sector

Spearhead groundbreaking research

Mobilize knowledge for the purposes of uptake in public policy

Enrich public education

Indigenous Education Initiative News

June 2016

The IEI has a new partnership with Native Child and Family Services (NCFST) and the Dollywood Foundation’s Imagination Library. Additional private donations ($10,000) were received to administer the project for the 2016/17 academic year. The Imagination Library is a community-based program providing children with free home delivered books from birth to age five. Started by musician and author Dolly Parton in the USA in 1996, more than 75 million books have since been distributed in four countries, including 68,000 books across Canada. The Imagination Library (2016) helps Canadian children to gain the skills they need to start school ready-to-read. It encourages reading in the home between parents, caregivers, grandparents, siblings and the child. Positive behaviour change has been reported since the program began and results show that when involved in the programme:

• Children are twice as likely to ask to have a book read to them. Increases reported from 40% to 77%.

• Parents are twice as likely to talk about shared reading with other parents. Increases reported from 40% to 80%.

• Parents report a 16% increase in daily reading with children (p.1)

The IEI will administer the program to NCFST’s Aboriginal Head Start programme, delivering books to the homes of 200 urban Aboriginal children who attend the four Head Start sites in Toronto. Research will be done by Dr. Stewart and her team to measure the mental health and educational impacts, and strengths and weaknesses of the programs in the urban Aboriginal community.

- Imagination Library (2016). Information Package.


On September 18, 2015, Chief Atleo will deliver the keynote at the 25th Gala of Fulbright in Ottawa. This lecture will be a key opportunity to advance the role and responsibilities of post secondary education in advancing reconciliation both within Indigenous communities and across North America.

Chief Shawn Atleo Visits the Dr. Eric Jackman Institute of Child Study

Kenora Daily Miner - Locals at World Indigenous Nations Higher Education Consortium this week (August 10-15) to connect with global neighbours

Globe and Mail - Universities will help reset relations between Indigenous and non-Indigenous people 

OISE Indigenous scholar Jean-Paul Restoule comments on the ciritical role solidarity plays in reconciliation

Indigenizing psychology

OISE responds to the release of the final report of Canada's Truth and Reconciliation Commission

TCDSB and OISE’s Indigenous Education Network partner to foster positive role models for First Nations, Métis and Inuit students

First Nations legal advocate Doug White lectures at OISE on Social Change and Reconciliation: Pursuing Social Justice in the 21st Century

Delegation from the Indigenous Education Initiative at OISE participates in UN Forum on Indigenous Issues

OISE hosts Aboriginal education forum

Chief Shawn A-in-chut Atleo Appointed Distinguished Fellow of the William A. Macdonald, Q.C. Fellowship and Adjunct Professor at the Ontario Institute for Studies in Education

Landmark donation will advance Indigenous education in Canada