Saskatoon, SK – Michif is an endangered language, only about 640 people in Canada speak Michif according to the 2016 census data. Métis Nation – Saskatchewan (MN-S) is working hard to ensure it lives on and that the number of speakers increases.
As part of those efforts, MN-S Ministry of Education is partnering with five school divisions in three communities in a Michif Early Learning Pilot Project (MELPP). This program will offer Michif language immersion to students starting this fall. Select schools in Regina, Saskatoon and Ile-a-la-Crosse school divisions are participating.
Métis teachers and Michif language keepers will be engaged and supported in this program. Designed to connect children with Métis culture and immerse them in a full-day Michif language program, the program will also and build capacity among educators. This initiative is part of The Future of Michif Program, a broader partnership between MN–S and the Royal Canadian Geographic Society aimed at revitalizing Michif language within the Province. We will continue this important work together to protect, promote, and practice Michif language. MN–S is also working to develop a Dene Early Learning Pilot Project with Northern Lights School Division in La Loche, and plans to support Dene language development for early learners.
Often children who have a strong cultural identity and shared respect for a multitude of language and cultures have increased academic success.
Registration for the Michif Early Learning Pilot Project for the 2020-21 school year is now open. Contact your nearest participating school board and get your children on the path to learning and conserving a beautiful and unique Indigenous language. The five school divisions offering the pilot project are Regina Public Schools, Regina Catholic Schools, Saskatoon Public Schools, Greater Saskatoon Catholic Schools and Ile-a-la-Crosse School Division.