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Programs in Indigenous Communities

Frontier College is proud of its long history of respectful partnerships with First Nations, Métis and Inuit (FNMI) communities across Canada. For over 40 years, Frontier College has worked with various FNMI partners to create appropriate literacy programs that address the needs of individual communities. We work to reflect the culture and traditions of each community in our programs. 

The Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada’s Final Report and Calls to Action show the injustices inflicted on FNMI communities during the residential school era. This has had a devastating impact on generations of FNMI Peoples. The Commission’s Final Report and Calls to Action reminds us that we each have a part to play in reconciliation efforts. These documents guide Frontier College and inform our work with FNMI communities and across our other literacy programs.

In partnering with First Nations, Métis and Inuit communities, we strive to develop innovative and responsive programs that:

  1. Respect the identity, diversity, priorities, and aspirations of each community
  2. Lead to tangible and sustainable outcomes for FNMI children, youth, and adults
  3. Address the educational attainment gap between FNMI and non-FNMI students, and FNMI children and youth living both on-reserve and off-reserve
  4. Build local workforce skills that enable communities to participate in and maximize economic development opportunities
Community Literacy Catalysts (CLC) Project

The Community Literacy Catalysts project assists FNMI communities in building/strengthening local capacity and expertise while also implementing and integrating different types of literacy programs that meet specific local needs, priorities and contexts.

In each community, local Literacy Catalysts are paired with Frontier College trainer-mentors, who provide them with ongoing professional training and coaching to carry out all aspects of literacy programming, from community consultations and development to program implementation and evaluation. These literacy programs can be directed at children, youth and adults; address gaps in existing services in the community; and/or add value to existing ones.

Summer Literacy Camps
The Lieutenant Governor's Indigenous Summer Reading Camp program began in 2005 as a pilot partnership between the former Lieutenant Governor of Ontario, the Hon. James Bartleman—a member of the Mnjikaning First Nation—and five fly-in First Nations in northern Ontario. Since then, this successful program has expanded to over 100 communities and serves thousands of Indiginous children and youth across the country.
The program supports FNMI student success in school by complementing the formal education system and responding to a need for quality supports in rural, remote, and isolated communities, especially during the summer. The camps prevent summer learning loss—the decline in student performance between school years—and promote a love of reading and learning so that students return to school better prepared to learn and succeed. Campers are provided with safe and supportive learning environments where they take part in many types of fun and educational activities, including reading, storytelling, writing, arts and crafts, music, science experiments, field trips, and more: all with carefully embedded elements of literacy and numeracy. Campers are encouraged to take ownership of their learning and feel comfortable talking about gaps in their knowledge; making mistakes and trying new things; asking questions, etc.

The Summer Literacy Camps program sets out to:

  1. Prevent summer learning loss
  2. Nurture a love of reading and learning
  3. Build on the literacy and numeracy skills of campers
  4. Promote parental and community involvement in the children’s learning
  5. Strengthen community capacity and build community partnerships
2016 National Camp Report
Workplace Essential Skills Program
The Workplace Essentials Program is designed to complement employers’ existing training systems by focusing on lower-skilled employees who require additional support and training to strengthen their skills and competencies in order to execute their jobs more effectively and efficiently.

Instructors from Frontier College are contracted by employers to provide workplace-based literacy, essential skills, and/or academic upgrading programs for their employees on a one-on-one basis, in small groups, or even online. The curriculum is customized for each individual employee’s skill set, tasks and responsibilities while also incorporating overall employment and employer objectives, corporate culture and processes. This results in higher individual and overall productivity, workplace safety, and a more skilled and engaged workforce.
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