Key components of this action are to ensure that legislation is enacted that recognizes the integral role of First Nations-mandated institutes in the BC post-secondary system and commits to provide ongoing core and capacity funding. This is part of the alignment of laws of British Columbia with Article 14 of the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples. First Nations-mandated institutes play a significant role in First Nation communities, helping to fill gaps where the mainstream education and post-secondary education systems have not been able to adequately support First Nation learners. Their role in supporting First Nation learners to continue their education journey has been and continues to be a key component of BC’s education system and for this reason, the institutes need to be recognized through legislation.
Planning funding has been secured to support Métis Nation BC (MNBC) with institute development and discussions are ongoing regarding possible governing structures through ongoing meetings.
- Amount of funding provided: One-time core funding of $4 million for First Nations mandated institutes provided in 2022/23 with an ongoing commitment of $6.7 million in annual core and capacity funding for First Nations-mandated institutes in the Stronger BC: Future Ready Action Plan.
How are we working together?
Consultation and collaborative development with the First Nations Education Steering Committee (FNESC) and the Indigenous Adult and Higher Learning Association (IAHLA) regarding the funding of First Nations-mandated post-secondary institutes predates the Declaration Act Action Plan and continues through regular meetings and collaborative policy development for the legislation and future requests for increased funding. Consultation on the legislation will be conducted with First Nations and engagement with the First Nations Leadership Council is planned.
The Ministry is taking a distinctions-based approach to implementing this action. As such, we are having separate discussions with FNESC and IAHLA and with the Métis Nation BC (MNBC).
Are there challenges?
Ongoing core and capacity funding for First Nations-mandated institutes has been secured as part of the StrongerBC: Future Ready Action Plan. Collaboratively developing all aspects of this policy and legislative initiative is complex and is taking some time to work through.