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Identifying Consistent Social Supports That Would Benefit FNIM Adult Learners at Royal West Campus

Project #253

Kimberley MacLeod Deidra Evans Cody Dill

Summary:

The focus of this research was to learn from First Nations, Métis and Inuit students attending an alternative adult learning program about their experiences with both supportive and non-supportive teaching environments.

The students described the importance of community or a sense of belonging, cultural teachings within the school, relationships with teachers or the school community and resilience as positive experiences within the system. They also outlined racism, a lack of connection to teachers or the school community transience and urbanization, poverty, grief and trauma and mental health and addiction struggles as negative experiences that impacted their education.

The research recommends increasing role models and mentors for Indigenous students, providing social workers and career counsellors in the schools, early interventions, nutrition programs, increased hands-on or creative learning, enhanced transitional supports and inclusion of culture and family in the school community as ways to support First Nations, Métis and Inuit students.