Arctic Yearbook 2014
Initiative was launched. The Education Renewal and Innovation Framework: Directions for Change was tabled
in the Legislative Assembly on October 31st, 2013, outlining the commitments of the renewal
initiative (GNWT 2013). Both territories seek to examine the education system and improve
outcomes, seeking to increase both graduation rates and the quality of secondary education through
building community relationships, good health and a strong sense of identity. The challenge is to
strike a balance between educating healthy, capable and empowered citizens who can make
informed choices about their individual and collective futures, and training the future labor force.
Establishing this balance is even more difficult given labor market pressures from a growing
resource and mining sector (Kennedy Dalseg 2014).
Figure 1: Map of Northwest Territories and Nunavut, site of territorial pilot research on new education module
It is against this backdrop that the territorial education departments in Nunavut and the NWT are
implementing new curriculum materials intended to better prepare students to face these emerging
pressures and opportunities. This paper will focus on the pilot of one new module of curriculum
developed collaboratively by the NWT and Nunavut for Grade 10 students. For two years, students
in the NWT and Nunavut have been learning about the history and legacy of Canada’s assimilation
policies and residential schools. The purpose of this paper is to highlight how learning from the new
module has developed students’ skills in critical thinking, citizenship, and community engagement in
the two territories.
From “Federal Shackles” to a Globalized Arctic: The Need for Enhanced Human Capital
On June 5, 2013, in the NWT’s Legislative Assembly, elected members voted on their Devolution
agreement, a motion allowing the territory to take on new authorities for decision making for land,
water, and resources from Canada’s federal government for the first time since confed