Indian Education Program

Project Details by Fiscal Year
2014 Fiscal Year Funding Amount
Fund Source
Arts & Cultural Heritage Fund
Independent School District #361
Recipient Type
K-12 Education
In Progress
Start Date
January 2014
End Date
June 2015
Legal Citation / Subdivision
M.L. 2014, Chp. 137, Art. 4, Sec. 2, Sub. 10 (b)
2014 Fiscal Year Funding Amount
Number of full time equivalents funded
Project Overview

-Ojibwe curriculum k-12
-Language tables
-Public Awareness through city signage in Ojibwe
-Transfer of recordings of elder Ojibwe speakers from cassette to CD (35)

About the Issue

Minnesota’s most enduring languages are in danger of disappearing. Without timely intervention,the use of Dakota and Ojibwe languages – like indigenous languages throughout the globe – will decline to a point beyond recovery.

These languages embody irreplaceable worldviews. They express, reflect, and maintain communal connections and ways of understanding the world. Deeper than the disuse of vocabulary or grammar, the loss of an indigenous language is destruction of a complex system for ordering the relationships among people and the natural world, for solving social problems, and connecting people to something beyond themselves.

 As languages are inherently inseparable from individual and communal identity, they are difficult to eradicate from a culture.  Severing the people from their lands, denying them sustenance, and forcing them into English-only boarding schools was not successful in destroying these languages.  For more than 100 years such assaults were aggressively pursued as the official policy of federal and state governments in the United States in attempt to eradicate the languages, and yet the languages of the Dakota and Ojibwe people survive.  The survival of Dakota and Ojibwe languages, however, remains threatened. Indigenous language revitalization now requires heroic measures in order for these languages to not only survive, but to thrive and to live on for future generations.

Project Details

This project provides Ojibwe language and culture classes to students in grades k-12. Weekly language tables will be conducted. Project participants will also create and distribute 100 professionally made Ojibwe signs to be displayed in the community to increase public awareness surrounding language activities. Another goal is to edit and transfer 35 cassette tapes containing stories by Ojibwe elders in the International Falls area to CD.

Project Manager
First Name
Last Name
Organization Name
Independent School District #361
Street Address
1515 11th Street
International Falls
Zip Code