Marg Boyle

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Aboriginal Education and Native Studies Resources from David Spencer's Education Paragon

  • Connect with Aboriginal elders and educators and join Native Education Association of Ontario Circle (NEAO Circle) formerly The Aboriginal and Environmental Education Circle (AEE Circle) e-newsletter. The NEAO Circle is a professional learning and sharing network of educators, teachers, college instructors, university professors, Aboriginal elders and leaders. Through e-mail, they share First Nation, Metis and Inuit and native studies resources, curriculum and teaching strategies that will help Canadian teachers integrate school curriculum with current cultural, environmental and historical contributions of our Canadian First Nations, Inuit and Metis brothers and sisters.
  • Join the Native Education Association of Ontario and NEAO Circle on Facebook.
  • See photos and read about past gatherings of The Aboriginal and Environmental Education Circle (AEE Circle).
  • Join the First Nation, Metis & Inuit Education Association of Ontario (FNMIEAO) the Ontario Ministry of Education recognized provincial subject association for teachers and educators of First Nation, Metis & Inuit Studies and Native Languages. From 2011 to May 2014, this subject association was previously called the Native Education Association of Ontario (NEAO). Special thanks to Marg Boyle for her three years of leadership, encouragement and support.
  • The shortcut to this page is http://aboriginal.davidspencer.ca.


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Marg Boyle

Marg Boyle was the founder and visionary behind the Native Education Association of Ontario (NEAO). From the year 2009 to May 2014, The Native Education Association of Ontario (NEAO) was the official Subject Association in Ontario for teachers of both First Nations, Métis and Inuit Studies from Grades 9-12.

Thanks to Marg Boyle`s groundwork and community connection building, the First Nation, Metis & Inuit Education Association of Ontario (FNMIEAO) is now the Ontario Ministry of Education recognized provincial subject association for teachers and educators of First Nation, Metis & Inuit Studies and Native Languages.


Marg Boyle and the Native Education Association of Ontario (NEAO)

THOUGHTS FROM MARG BOYLE
Source: NEAO News, Issue 1 2013/2014. Published by fnmieao on May 14, 2014.<http://www.scribd.com/doc/224204044/NEAO-Newsletter>.


Dear Members of NEAO,

I started NEAO in 2009 because I believed that FNMI Studies and Native Language teachers in Ontario needed a voice, ways to share their knowledge, and means to learn from each other. I feel that we have accomplished some of that initial vision.

I had goals for NEAO that have not been met and I am thus sad to step down from leadership of an organization that I started and deeply care about, yet I know that the Creator sets limits on us when we need to refocus our priorities on our path through life. I am stepping down so I can do a good job at work, take care of my lovely family, heal and do ceremony.

While not all of the goals have been met, I am confident that the council can keep things going in the direction of that vision.

Here are some closing thoughts about Aboriginal Education in Ontario and my aspirations for NEAO:

  1. I hope to see a day when the knowledge of Anishinaabe, Haudenosaunee, Métis and Inuit elders, parents, children and teachers is embraced in all schools and school boards. I hope to see a day when school boards actively recruit, retain and promote leadership for FNMI teachers and respect the unique cultural, linguistic, and spiritual perspectives such educators bring to the job. I hope to see a time when the voices represented by NEAO can be truly heard fairly by the Ministry of Education. I hope to see a day when Aboriginal funding is audited, so that all funds from the Ministry are used directly for Aboriginal-centred, culturally authentic programming for children in all schools.
  2. I hope to see a time when each region has an active chapter of NEAO. I hope to see a time when FNMI Studies teachers in one region can easily find a way to connect with a teachers of the same course elsewhere in the province. I hope to see a time when NEAO works with Native Language teachers to create a resource bank of lessons in all of the FNMI languages offered in Ontario schools.
  3. I hope to see a time when I do not hear racist or paternalistic statements about our FNMI children, youth, elders, teachers, parents, communities and nations. I hope to see a day when FNMI Studies and Native Languages are equally valued in every school board. I hope to see a day when FNMI cultural proficiency is not a coin phrase but a reality.
  4. I want every Canadian child to know what First Nation, Métis and Inuit lands that they live on, and know about its cultures, values, world views, and languages of those lands.
  5. I want to see all our kids share their cultures freely and with pride in a school system that has changed considerably since I started teaching 25 years ago. Despite this progress, there is still more to be done toward inclusion of FNMI children.
  6. I want all of the FNMI students to succeed while being respected for who they are. I want colonialization of our nations through the tool of the education system to end.

These are large visions; but I think NEAO has been, and can continue to be, a starting point toward supporting teachers and administrators who genuinely care about our children.

We have met some goals that our membership endorsed at the first AGM, so I thank all of you who have helped us to date. We have facilitated the development of two resources for faculties of Education across Canada on Aboriginal-specific education, and we have held three regional events in the last year. Our website is being revamped; a traditional gathering of elders and teachers is planned for the Fall; and since the last AGM we have gained a listserv. These are key steps in making NEAO a sustainable organization.

There are many of you who can take NEAO to where it needs to be, so that this vision, which I know our elders and our parents share, can be realized. If you can offer assistance in any way, please do. We have ten active members of council but encourage more educators, elders, and community members to become involved in NEAO. As an auntie to many and a step-mom to one, I feel compelled to say that we must continue to advocate for authenticity in Aboriginal Education and continue to lobby for the hiring of First Nations, Métis and Inuit teachers teaching with the wisdom of the nations behind them. This goal has not been met, but with the changes that I have seen over the course of my career I know that if we continue to use our voices, things can change.

My teaching, and my life has been greatly enriched by the people I have met through NEAO.

Wela`liog Ilnu, Msit No`kmaq

Marg Boyle,
Kitchitwàwizìwin niskandàgwéwan-ojé, Migjigj Dodem, Tabisintac FN, Listiguj FN, Métis de la Gespeg.