Archive for August, 2016

Indigenous education in Canada (part 5)

Friday, August 5th, 2016

So what to do? Establish a strategy within the government and, in particular, Carolyn Bennett’s office, which acknowledges and exploits this invaluable asset. Then, find a community wherein a pilot project could be developed.

West Québec’s Pontiac riding is comprised of urban/suburban, immigrant, agricultural, indigenous, and remote communities, operating in both official languages, all within a vast and varied geography; in other words, the perfect representation of Canada. Additionally, Pontiac’s southern zone is in the National Capital region and within reach of federal and corporate technology partners.

These attributes make Pontiac the perfect test bed for a pilot project (leading to national deployment) that applies established Canadian research, expertise, knowledge, and the Liberal innovation legacy of broadband communications and distance education to the development of a virtual classroom strategy benefiting indigenous education.

In brief, the project would develop a white paper and a series of demonstration events in virtual classroom education techniques, and a documentary final report. It would pave the way for national deployment of similar events, and would ultimately contribute to the achievement of the policies outlined in the ministerial mandate letters.

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Indigenous education in Canada (part 4)

Wednesday, August 3rd, 2016

In 2002, Canadian Heritage and Industry Canada began supporting advanced research in interactive media on the CANARIE network. Performance Space Meets Cyberspace (PSMC) was a two-year investigation into new online channels for a virtual classroom of Canadian culture that connected producers, stages, museums, classrooms and audiences across the country.   This project has been cited internationally as a groundbreaking prototype in online performance and story telling.

While PSMC proposed a new pan-Canadian virtual arts and culture space, it also gave insights into communications in other fields, including contributing a paper on e-democracy and a virtual Parliament to the Liberal Party’s Canada 150 conference.  PSMC discovered new methods of participant engagement and consensus building among groups over networks, essential elements to improving education. Many of the events included First Nations story telling, and sharing of indigenous knowledge.  Communications of this sort, by its very definition, is inclusive and two-way, an essential value in the Liberal policy book.

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