Two Educational Policy Studies professors, who are also parents, have added their voices to the chorus of concerns about the Alberta government’s fall school re-entry plans during a surge in the coronavirus pandemic.
Tiffany Prete, an adjunct professor in the Department of Educational Policy Studies, has a number of reasons for pursuing research on the history of residential schools in her home community, the Blood Reserve in southern Alberta. Some of those reasons are related to contributing to the body of research by Indigenous scholars. Some of those reasons are personal.
Even though Alberta’s Teacher Quality Standards place an emphasis on including Indigenous histories and knowledges, many teachers continue to be unsure of how to present such material, or of the role of settler colonialism in nation-building, according to a PhD candidate in Educational Policy Studies.
Students from nine different schools across Canada are joining together in a virtual classroom to discuss the meaning of reconciliation—and to learn how to advocate for equity and justice.
The National Youth Dialogue project, based in the Centre for Global Citizenship Education and Research (CGCER) at the University of Alberta, will bring together approximately 700 Grade 9 students from coast to coast to practice a crucial aspect of citizenship they might not learn otherwise.
“Teachers don’t leave society at the door when they enter into classrooms and neither do the students,” says Alex Da Costa, a professor in the Department of Educational Policy Studies at the University of Alberta.
“If in general racism and racial inequalities shape the society more broadly, there’s no way they won’t infiltrate into classroom spaces, into the texts that are used, into the nature of what becomes part of the curriculum.”