Ed.D. Dissertations

Date of Award

7-2019

Document Type

Open Access Dissertation

College

College of Education

Department

Education

Degree Name

Doctorate of Education, Ed.D.

Faculty Chair

Julie McCann, Ed.D.

Content Specialist

Catherine Beck, Ed.D.

Content Reader

Dan Shepherd, Ed.D.

Keywords

Indigenous people, high school completion, relationships, awareness, resiliency

Abstract

In Canada, 25% fewer Indigenous students complete high school compared to non-Indigenous students. Given the rich culture and tradition of education within Indigenous communities and families, why is the discrepancy between graduation rates for Indigenous students compared to non-Indigenous students so significant? How do educators support Indigenous students complete high school? A review of previous literature suggested that, in order to improve Indigenous student success in completing high school, schools should consider addressing learning environments, improving culturally-infused pedagogical practices, and addressing the barriers in place for Indigenous people. This study’s method was a case study design with data collected and findings triangulated through focus groups, observations, and document review. The intention of this qualitative study was to provide insights from the perspective, perceptions, feelings, and lived experiences of Grade 12 Indigenous students on how educators can better support high school completion for Indigenous students. The findings suggested that if educators improve relationships, build on awareness, and focus on supporting students to build resiliency, rates of high school completion could improve for Indigenous students. On this basis, it is recommended that school districts provide targeted professional development opportunities, engage with increased community involvement, target early childhood education programs, and focus on cultural awareness and privilege within schools and the larger community.

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Education Commons

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