Ontario and Anishinabek Nation Sign Historic Education Agreement

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Province Working in Partnership with First Nations to Support Student Achievement

An historic education agreement will support the achievement and well-being of Anishinabek students through enhanced collaboration between the participating First Nations and the Government of Ontario.

Mitzie Hunter, Minister of Education, was in the Chippewas of Rama First Nation today to join the participating First Nations in signing a Master Education Agreement. The Minister also witnessed the signing of the Anishinabek Nation Education Agreement between participating First Nations and Canada – the largest sectoral self-government agreement of its kind. Together, these agreements will support the implementation of the Anishinabek Education System.

The agreement describes the relationship between the Anishinabek Education System and Ontario’s provincially-funded education system, and sets out commitments – including areas of collaboration and action – between the parties. The agreement will:

  • Support the transition of students between Anishinabek First Nations’ schools and schools in the provincially-funded education system
  • Foster engagement and participation of students, parents, families and communities to realize the goal of improved student achievement and well-being
  • Enhance collaboration between participating First Nations, the Kinoomaadziwin Education Body, Ontario and school boards, including data and information sharing
  • Support the advancement of Anishinabek language and culture, and the knowledge of Anishinabek First Nations’ histories, perspectives and contributions within Anishinabek First Nations’ schools and provincially-funded schools.

More than 90 per cent of the 26,000 Anishinabek students attend provincially-funded schools in Ontario. Participating First Nations and district school boards will continue to work together to support Anishinabek student achievement.

Quick Facts

  • The Master Education Agreement is conditional upon the signing of a separate education self-government agreement, the Anishinabek Nation Education Agreement, between the Government of Canada and the participating First Nations. The agreement recognizes Anishinabek jurisdiction over education on-reserve from Junior Kindergarten to Grade 12 in 23 participating First Nations throughout Ontario.
  • The Anishinabek Nation is a political advocate for 40 First Nations across Ontario, representing an approximate combined population of 60,000 citizens.
  • The Anishinabek Education System target implementation date is April 1, 2018.

Background Information

Additional Resources


Mitzie Hunter

“Ontario is strengthening relationships with First Nations communities and supporting the success and well-being of First Nations students. The Master Education Agreement between our province and the Anishinabek First Nations highlights Ontario’s commitment to working in partnership with First Nations in a spirit of mutual respect and collaboration.”

Mitzie Hunter

Minister of Education

David Zimmer

“Today’s announcement marks a landmark agreement between the Anishinabek Nation and Ontario. This agreement, rooted in a deep commitment to meaningful reconciliation, is the first of its kind in Ontario and will lead to better supports and outcomes for Indigenous students throughout their school years and beyond. Congratulations.”

David Zimmer

Minister of Indigenous Relations and Reconciliation

“I am pleased that Ontario, through the Ministry of Education, has acknowledged the critical need for provincial support and investment into the education of Anishinaabe students. I have no doubt that this support will result in academic excellence and improved personal and cultural growth.”

Patrick Wedaseh Madahbee

Grand Council Chief, Anishinabek Nation

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