We Are All Treaty People

OTC calls for cultural competency training in schools

  • Published - 23/12/2020
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  • Posted By - OTC
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The Treaty Commissioner of Saskatchewan was hurt and angered to hear of a young Indigenous girl feeling discriminated against and excluded from her school’s formal wear day, when she chose to wear a piece of her Indigenous ancestry and put on a ribbon skirt.

“I wore a ribbon skirt to the swearing in of our Lieutenant Governor and I wore a ribbon skirt to meet the Governor General, because that is my formal wear,” said Mary Culbertson, Treaty Commissioner of Saskatchewan.

Throughout the year the Office of the Treaty Commissioner reaches out to school divisions to offer the Teaching Treaties in the Classroom curriculum as well as other public education and cultural trainings. In eastern Saskatchewan we’ve worked with Key, Keeseekoose, Ochapawace, Cote First Nations and the Yorkton Tribal Council and have seen partnerships form with other schools. The OTC wants to see conversations on Treaty, resilience, culture, and identity, expand and deepen.

We are renewing the call for schools in Kamsack and the surrounding area to engage with the OTC and grow cultural competency within the education system. All staff, not just teachers, but everyone from custodians to bus drivers, nutrition staff and board members, should be participating to make the school system a safe place to be for all children. 

“I look forward to working together as a provincial community to reach a place where Indigenous people do not have to be afraid of discrimination and look forward to wearing clothing that celebrates resilience, culture, and identity,” Culbertson said.