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Re-focused Nunavut Teacher Education Program to strengthen Inuit language and culture in schools

10 September 2019

PRESS RELEASE

Re-focused Nunavut Teacher Education Program to strengthen Inuit language and culture in schools

Iqaluit, Nunavut (September 10, 2019) – The first initiative of the 10-Year Strategic Partnership between Nunavut Arctic College (NAC) and Memorial University of Newfoundland (MUN) is the delivery of a re-focused Nunavut Teacher Education Program (NTEP), beginning last week in several Nunavut communities.

The re-focused NTEP replaces the previous NTEP and is based on recommendations from the NTEP review that occurred in 2017-18. Learners currently enrolled in the existing program will receive a bachelor of education degree through MUN upon graduation. The re-focused NTEP will incorporate Inuktut language and culture and will ensure graduates are well prepared to enter Nunavut’s unique bilingual educational system.

After completion of the first year of the re-focused NTEP, learners will receive a Nunavummi Inuktut Uqariuqsatittijiunirmut Ilinniarniq certificate. Learners who complete the second year of the program will be entitled to a language specialist diploma and will be qualified to work in Nunavut schools. Learners who complete the 150 credits of the NTEP will be in the position to obtain a bachelor of education degree.

The education programs division continues its work to re-focus the program through an NTEP sector advisory committee and an Inuktut language and culture sub-committee with representatives from the departments of Education and Culture and Heritage, MUN and Nunavut Tunngavik Inc. (NTI). During the 2019-2020 academic year, the education programs division will develop various language streams to continue the work to revitalize and enhance Inuktut language skills across the NTEP. The re-focused NTEP will build on the success of MUN’s Inuit bachelor of education degree in Nunatsiavut. The committee will ensure that learning outcomes from the re-focused program are aligned with Nunavut’s labour market needs.

“When Inuit changed the face of Canada through the creation of Nunavut, we set out to create an education system that is reflective of our language and culture and ensures that our children and grandchildren are well prepared for post-secondary education and finding employment,” said Patterk Netser, Minister responsible for Nunavut Arctic College. “To achieve this fundamental goal, the college partnered with Memorial University to create a program that equally values Inuktut and English and prepares Nunavummiut to teach in our unique educational system.”

“I believe this teacher training program will successfully increase the number of Inuktut-speaking educators in our classrooms,” said Education Minister David Joanasie. “Young Nunavummiut and future NTEP graduates on their learning journey have a tremendous opportunity to secure and strengthen Inuit language and culture for generations to come.”

A record number of learners are enrolled in the first year of the re-focused NTEP, which is being offered in Cambridge Bay, Coral Harbour, Iqaluit and Pangnirtung. Learners who were previously enrolled in Arviat, Baker Lake, Gjoa Haven, Iqaluit, Kugaaruk and Rankin Inlet will graduate with a bachelor of education degree from MUN.

Through a competitive process held last year, representatives from NAC, the Government of Nunavut Department of Education and NTI selected MUN as the partnering institution.

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Media contact
Nunavut Arctic College:
Mariana Barney
Manager, Marketing, Communications, and Recruitment
867-979-7242
mariana.barney@arcticcollege.ca
www.arcticcollege.ca

Media contact
Memorial University:
David Sorensen, Manager, Communications
Marketing & Communications
709 864-2143
mobile 709 685-7134
sorensen@mun.ca
www.mun.ca