Look to the Future in 2011

Title VII Indian Education Program

San Diego Unified School District

By Roy Cook

The mission of the San Diego Title VII Indian Education Program will continue to meet the unique educational and culturally related academic needs and challenges of American Indians and Alaskan Natives (AI/AN). We in the San Diego American Indian community will soon be challenged by the retirement of Ms Vickie Gambala. She will leave us with the constant realization that it is not about the adults but it is always about the Indian children. Thereby, it is up to the parents and American Indian community and the next staff person to realize that these students can achieve the same California state standards as all students. The Title VII Indian Education Program is committed to providing families of American Indian and Alaskan Native students with culture, community and educational opportunities.

Historically, twenty nine years ago, the San Diego American Indian community formed a committee: Ron Andrade, Randy Edmonds, Don Vigneault, Bob and Jenny Otto, Ruby and John Teton, Sue Robinson. Their goal was to develop the Indian Education program with the San Diego Unified School District. It took two years of hard work and negations with the district, to complete the bylaws, form a parent committee and write a grant that formed our Indian Education Program. This was a time and a social atmosphere that led to the passage of the 1972 Indian Education Act and the 1975 Indian Self Determination Act. This was landmark legislation that states that Self-determination is a better idea that Indian people, not the U.S. government, should decide what is best for Indian America.

The Title VII Indian Education Program is federally funded as part of the 1968 civil rights legislation and treaty guarantees through the Office of Indian Education in Washington D.C. The San Diego Title VII Indian Education program is one of the few Urban Indian Education programs that still exist today. The current Parent Committee: Suzanne Goldin Hood- Chairperson, Deborah Razo - Vice Chairperson, Nannie Osawa -Parent and Connie Grey Bull – Parent. They continue to search for new funding, grants and support from other agencies to assist the Indian Education program to continue to provide services for the American Indian/Alaskan Native students in the District.

Most recently, the Obama administration indicated they will continue the No Child Left behind Act. This act amends the Indian education programs under Title VII, Part A of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act. This controversial education reform embodies four key principles: stronger accountability for results; greater flexibility in the use of federal funds; more choices for parents of children from disadvantaged backgrounds; and an emphasis on research-based instruction.

· FY 2011 Office of Indian Education Discretionary Grant Availability to Fund Down Slate
On May 20, 2011, a Federal Register Notice was published announcing the availability of funding for under two Office of Indian Education discretionary programs. These include the Indian Demonstration and the Indian Professional Development programs. Though not a new competition, these funds will be used to fund down the previously approved slate from the prior competition.

The Federal Register Notice announcement was published on May 20 for the Indian Demonstration program and may be accessed here: http://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/FR-2011-04-04/pdf/2011-7908.pdf. The Federal Register Notice for the Indian Professional Development program may be accessed here: http://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/FR-2011-05-20/pdf/2011-12501.pdf.
May 24, 2011

Source: http://www2.ed.gov/about/offices/list/oese/oie/index.html