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The state of Aboriginal learning in Canada: A holistic approach to measuring success

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Canadian Council on Learning (CCLA)
Publication Date: 
9 Dec 2009


Until now, a comprehensive framework for measuring Aboriginal learning has been unavailable in Canada, or, in fact, most of the world. The State of Aboriginal Learning in Canada: A Holistic Approach to Measuring Success represents the first application of such a framework and marks an innovative approach to measuring Aboriginal learning in Canada.

The report and the information it presents are the result of the Holistic Lifelong Learning Measurement Framework, a first-of-its-kind means of measuring Aboriginal learning in Canada.

Based on CCL's three Holistic Lifelong Learning Models, which were developed in partnership with Aboriginal learning experts across Canada, the Framework is comprised of three components: Sources and Domains of Knowledge, The Lifelong Learning Journey and Community Well-Being.

The new framework incorporates elements common to all three learning models, while acknowledging elements that are unique to the learning perspectives of First Nations, Inuit and Métis people. It also provides a shared tool for monitoring progress in Aboriginal communities for future years.

Each component of the framework includes a set of indicators that contribute to a more complete assessment of Aboriginal learning. Taken together, these indicators illustrate the full range of learning opportunities that occur across the life cycle (from infancy through to the senior years) and in a variety of settings (school, home, community, workplace and the land).

By providing a more balanced understanding of Aboriginal learning, this report offers a new narrative that supersedes the familiar storyline that concentrates on learning deficits and academic shortcomings.

This new expanded approach will, for the first time, provide Aboriginal communities across Canada with a comprehensive picture of both their learning strengths and challenges. It will also hopefully give decision-makers and policy makers a new starting point in which to affect real change.

See page 31 for early childhood development and learning