Northern Native Languages
I am continuing my study of the Northern Native Languages Project conducted in 1979-80. This phase of the study is focused on taped interviews: the recollections of First Nations citizens concerning the role of Aboriginal and English languages in schools at that time.
The NNLP was influential in developing policy for teaching Aboriginal languages as subjects of instruction, and for the professionalization of Native language teachers. It also led to the development of culturally relevant English-as-a-second-language materials for use in schools serving Aboriginal students in northern Ontario . The NNLP was unable, however, to advance the notion of Aboriginal languages as languages of instruction (vernacular language education) because that concept was rejected by federal, and ultimately by provincial, policy makers. In rejecting vernacular language education for Aboriginal students in Ontario , these policy makers contributed to the erosion of Aboriginal languages in Ontario.
John S. Long Ed.D.
Faculty of Education
(705) 474-3461, ext. 4130