May 9, 2017 – Kuujjuaq, Nunavik – Makivik Corporation was shocked by the recent news released by the Kativik School Board (KSB) that Nunavik students have not been receiving standard Secondary School Diplomas for several years (since 2013 or 2015), and instead have been presented with “attestations” (Attestation of Equivalence of Secondary Studies, or AESS) from the KSB. This would be the result of the KSB math and science programs not meeting the Ministry of Education requirements.
“The situation is critical for students in school. We will take all necessary actions to shed light on the situation. I am angry and disappointed that students and parents were not informed about the fact they were receiving an “attestation” instead of a real diploma when they were graduating for a number of years. I want to work with the KSB to solve the immediate issue, and more fundamentally address the education system in Nunavik,” says Jobie Tukkiapik.
Makivik has responsibilities in its corporate objectives for education stemming from the James Bay and Northern Quebec Agreement. The 2014 Parnasimautik Consultation Report and the accompanying Nunavik Inuit Declaration, states that “an educated population is essential to empower us to take our rightful pace in a rapidly changing world, in local and regional economies and to live healthier and full lives.”
Education is at the core of a better future for Nunavik Inuit. We must listen to our youth – they are speaking. The recently released report A New Shared Arctic Leadership Model contains a quote from the Qarjuit Youth Council stating:
“To move forward in any aspect in life and in our society, we need to be educated. The youth want to be well with who they are and where they come from. Youth also understand the importance of quality, formal education so they can become active members of their communities and society and have access to all levels of employment in the communities, region or elsewhere if that is what they choose.”
“I also welcome the interest from the Commission des droits de la personne et des droits de jeunesse (said Jobie Tukkiapik. The commission has a mandate to carry out investigations on its own initiative. Makivik will cooperate fully with any investigation or research the Commission may choose to undertake.
Nunavik faces challenges that are different from the rest of the province. It is the common responsibility of Nunavik Inuit leaders and the Government of Quebec to take action and do what is necessary to resolve this unacceptable situation. Our future depends on an education system that produces graduates at par with other students in Quebec and who are confident in their skills, language and culture.
Communications Coordinator and Media Relations
Makivik is the Land Claims Organizations mandated to manage the heritage funds of the Inuit of Nunavik provided for under the James Bay and Northern Québec Agreement. Makivik’s role includes the administration and investment of these funds and the promotion of economic growth by providing assistance for the creation of Inuit-operated businesses in Nunavik. Makivik promotes the preservation of Inuit culture and language as well as the health, welfare, relief of poverty, and education of Inuit in the communities
Statement from Makivik President on the Status of Diplomas for Students Graduating from the Kativik School Board in Nunavik