Work is underway in the Quesnel School District to develop local courses as part of a new Indigenous-focused graduation requirement in BC.
Superintendent Dan Lowndes says they still have a bit of time.
“On March 4th the Ministry of Education, in partnership with FNESC, which is the First Nations Educational Steering Committee, announced a new graduation requirement. It will be for all graduates in British Columbia, and it will take effect in the 2023-24 school year.”
Lowndes says they are now working to be ready by that date.
“There are a number of courses already completed. (provincially) The locally developed courses will take a little bit more time as we work with partners. So no set date, but definitely through the rest of this school year, and into next school year we’ll be working on that.”
Lowndes says each student will be required to have at least 4 credits of the 80 needed for graduation to be from Indigenous-focused courses, but they will have a variety of different choices.
“It’s not just one particular course. There will be quite a significant selection, and we’re working with local indigenous partners and First Nations groups to have our own locally developed courses for local history from the area to satisfy this requirement as well, if students decide to take that course.”
Lowndes says currently only approximately 5 percent of graduates in BC have completed credited indigenous focus course work.
“So this is a foundational step in BC’s work towards truth and reconciliation. It’s actually a really proud time for BC.”