Hi there tout la gang,

We don't have much to say about research in practice at the Café right now

but we are talking policy and practice over here now: Literacy Enquirers.

Monday, March 3, 2008

a place to do literacy

This is International Adult Learners Week and this IALW will highlight the 60th Anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.

"Having a place to do literacy is as important as the literacy itself."

Lyndsay Mollins Koene (yes, we are related).

From the Attawapiskat Fact Sheet:

Where is it? Attawapiskat is an isolated, fly-in community on the coast of James Bay. It is located 455 kilometres north of Timmins, Ontario.

Who are they? The residents of Attawapiskat are known as the “Mushkego” -- the Swampy Cree of western James Bay. There are over 1300 people in the community.

What's the issue? For 8 years, Attawapiskat children have had no school. In 2000, the grade school was closed because children were getting sick from a massive diesel spill under the school. The spill happened in 1979 while the government of Canada was operating the school. Since then, 400 students have had to rely on portables. The community has worked hard to get a new school built. Three federal Indian Affairs Ministers have committed to moving ahead with the project. In December 2007, however, the new Indian Affairs Minister Chuck Strahl arbitrarily cancelled the proposed school. The government claims there is no money for First Nation schools for the next five years. And yet, last year they refused to spend over $109 million that had been allocated for infrastructure projects like schools. This money was sent back to Treasury Board.

Why is this happening? There are two standards for education in Canada. Every non-Native child has guaranteed rights under provincial education standards. The First Nation children of Canada have no such rights. This means that reserve schools are built with inadequate classroom sizes, fewer resources and less special education dollars. A system of educational Apartheid exists in Canada. We must change this appalling double-standard.

(This issue will be a topic of discussion at the Great Moon Gathering next week.)

Happy IALW. Happy UDofHR.

Article 26.

    (1) Everyone has the right to education. Education shall be free, at least in the elementary and fundamental stages. Elementary education shall be compulsory. Technical and professional education shall be made generally available and higher education shall be equally accessible to all on the basis of merit.

    (2) Education shall be directed to the full development of the human personality and to the strengthening of respect for human rights and fundamental freedoms. It shall promote understanding, tolerance and friendship among all nations, racial or religious groups, and shall further the activities of the United Nations for the maintenance of peace.

    (3) Parents have a prior right to choose the kind of education that shall be given to their children.

Article 2.

    Everyone is entitled to all the rights and freedoms set forth in this Declaration, without distinction of any kind, such as race, colour, sex, language, religion, political or other opinion, national or social origin, property, birth or other status. Furthermore, no distinction shall be made on the basis of the political, jurisdictional or international status of the country or territory to which a person belongs, whether it be independent, trust, non-self-governing or under any other limitation of sovereignty.


Robert Pollard said...

Congratulations on your timely choice of theme!

I was delighted to hear about this - via a Google News Alert on "60th Anniversary" "Universal Declaration of Human Rights" - about the International Adult Learners Week and your theme of the 60th Anniversary, and would like to share the website at www.ngo-framework.net - that I have set up for the Planning Committee for the 61st Annual DPI/NGO Conference, 3-5 September, 2008, in Paris, that will also focus on the 60th Anniversary.

The web site contains the full text of the Universal Declaration - and the other four resolutions included in the International Bill of Human Rights, other human rights conventions, pages for the UN committees for some of the principle conventions, and some other UN sites relating to the 60th Anniversary.

Dignity & Justice for All of Us: Being the change we want to see
Rather light a candle than curse the darkness. Eleanor Roosevelt

Wendell Dryden said...

Love that quote. You guys, too. Thks for the effort you make.

Didn't get Any of that neoliberal matrix stuff! But I didn't get the movie either.

I'm more of a Star Trek, "he's literate, Jim, but not as we know it" kind of guy.

Happy UDofHR. ;)

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