Students win raffles for school attendance

The Attendance Workgroup, a subgroup of PIE (Phillips Indian Educators), has been sponsoring a raffle every quarter for Native students who attend school at a 95% rate or better (for the quarter). Four schools in Minneapolis are involved. Every student from Anishinabe, All Nations, Nawayee Center, and Takoda Prep with this level of attendance receives a certificate and is entered in a raffle for a $250.00 gift card. The gift cards have been provided through generous donations from Migizi, Division of Indian Work (DIW) and Little Earth. The third quarter raffle winners are Luis Manzanares, 2nd grader at Anishinabe, and Jamison Hart, 9th grader at All Nations.

AIOIC recognized for closing the achievement gap

Takoda Prep, the alternative high school located at the American Indian OIC, has been selected as a site of best practice in a national report on indigenized education for Urban Indians. Commissioned by the National Urban Indian Family Coalition in Seattle, Takoda Prep will be one of seven programs located in five different urban centers to be examined for harnessing culturally contextualized education and alternative learning methodologies to close the achievement gap between Native students and their white counterparts.

Takoda Prep of AIOIC enrolls students who have fallen behind in the traditional educational setting and are at risk of dropping out. Located within the Little Earth neighborhood of Minneapolis, most students are Native American whose elders did not complete school. The graduation rate for American Indian students in Minneapolis is 36 percent. Through individualized education plans and culturally relevant programming, students at Takoda Prep graduation at a rate of 85 percent.

The mission of the American Indian OIC is to empower American Indians to pursue career opportunities by providing individualized education, training, and employment services in a culturally rich environment.

Mendota Mdewakanton Dakota receive MRAC grant

The Mendota Mdewakanton Dakota Tribal Community has received a $10,000.00 grant from the Metropolitan Regional Arts Council (MRAC). The grant will go to Fund the 18th Annual Traditional Wacipi, a three-day Native American celebration and social gathering. Activities will take place on the St. Peters Church grounds in Mendota in September. MRAC has awarded a total of $740,272 to 77 organizations/projects in the second round of the FY 2017 Arts Activities Support grant program. For more info on the MMDT Community, see http://mendotadakota.com/mn.

Prairie Island breaks ground on elder living center

The Prairie Island Indian Community broke ground in June on their new elder assisted living center in Welch, Minn. The 38,000-square-foot center is located on 18 acres of tribal land and will serve tribal elders.

The single story structure will house 24 one-bedroom apartments, which will have full kitchens, living rooms, bathrooms, in-unit laundry and private patios. Residents will allow the elders to live in their own apartments but still have access to professional staff 24 hours a day.