Funds to Aid Preservation, Revitalization of Native Languages
Published March 25, 2016
WASHINGTON—The U.S. Department of Education’s Office of English Language Acquisition announced today in the Federal Register the availability of more than $3.2 million in grants to provide effective instruction to Native American students who are identified as English learners.
Under the Native American and Alaska Native Children in School Program (NAM) program, funds will be used to support the teaching, learning and studying of Native American languages including Native Hawaiian and Native American Pacific Islanders. A key aim will be to increase the English language proficiency of students served to achieve the same rigorous state academic standards for all students.
“These grants represent an opportunity to increase support for our Native American children starting with our earliest learners to be well-prepared for college and career success through the preservation of native languages and cultural identity,” said U.S. Secretary of Education John B. King Jr. “With this funding, we continue to deliver on our promise of equity, excellence and opportunity in supporting all students, particularly students, educators and families who have been underserved.”
Among the priorities for the program:
- Supporting the preservation and revitalization of Native American languages.
- Encouraging a focus on improving early learning and development outcomes.
Meaningful parent, family and community engagement are expected to be part of the projects to enhance student achievement. The deadline for submitting an Intent to Apply is April 14, 2016. The deadline for submitting applications is May 24, 2016.
“The Administration is committed to equity and access for all students,” said Libia Gil, assistant deputy secretary and director of the Office of English Language Acquisition. “These projects will recognize the rich heritage that Native American students bring to school and enable them to receive appropriate support to improve educational outcomes.”
The Obama Administration is committed to improving the lives of American Indian and Alaskan Native children. Since 2008, the Department has awarded an estimated $40.3 million in NAM grants.
In September, the Department announced $5.3 million in grants to support Native Youth Community Projects (NYCP) in becoming college- and career-ready. The grants are impacting more than 30 tribes in nine states and involve more than 48 schools.
The program allows tribes and tribal communities to identify culturally appropriate supports to address needs for students that have been identified by the community. The grants support President Obama’s Generation Indigenous “Gen I” Initiative also launched last year to help Native American youth.