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Feds to table First Nations education bill

By: The Canadian Press

 | Apr 10, 2014 - 11:07 AM |
OTTAWA - The Conservative government is tabling its First Nations education bill as aboriginal organizations across the country complain that the legislation falls far short of needs and doesn't give them control of their education systems.

The bill proposes a way in which First Nations can come together to effectively form school boards while receiving sustainable funding, a government official told a technical briefing shortly before the bill was scheduled to be introduced in Parliament.

The official says the funding will flow to First Nations authorities the same way that provincial school boards currently receive funding.

Aboriginal groups have rejected Ottawa's efforts, saying all authority remains in hands of the federal government under the legislation and that First Nations will continue to lack any control over their education systems.

They also say funding is also insufficient.

Vice Chief Bobby Cameron of the Federation of Saskatchewan Indian Nations says aboriginals have treaty rights to education under international law that are not trumped by federal legislation.

He adds that the federal government failed to consult in any serious way with First Nations and have ignored all concerns raised by native organizations.

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