Students in Grades 10-12 will need to complete four credits of the current 80 credit requirements for their BC Certificate of Graduation, or the Dogwood Diploma, in Indigenous-focused courses. (Government of British Columbia)

Students in Grades 10-12 will need to complete four credits of the current 80 credit requirements for their BC Certificate of Graduation, or the Dogwood Diploma, in Indigenous-focused courses. (Government of British Columbia)

Indigenous-focused grad requirements coming next year for Maple Ridge Pitt Meadows students

New requirement part of the province’s commitment to truth and reconciliation

Next year students in the Maple Ridge Pitt Meadows School District will need to complete an Indigenous-focused requirement in order to graduate.

Starting in the 2023/24 school year students in Grades 10-12 will need to complete four credits of the current 80 credit requirements for their BC Certificate of Graduation, or the Dogwood Diploma, in Indigenous-focused courses.

Options could include current provincial courses already part of the school system or a First Nations language course.

Provincial courses include BC First Peoples 12 and Contemporary Indigenous Studies 12. English First Peoples: Literacy Studies 10, New Media 10, Spoken Language 10, Writing 10, Literary Studies + New Media 11, Literary Studies + Spoken Language 11, Literary Studies + Writing 11, English First Peoples 12.

Some of the courses will be considered two credit courses, allowing the student to meet half the requirement with one class.

Language courses could include: Gitxsenimx; Halq’emeylem; Heiltsuk; Hul’q’umi’num’; Kwak’wala; Liqwala/Kwak’wala; nsiylxcen; Nte?kepmxcin; Nuucaan’ut; Secwepemctsin; SENCOTEN; Shashishalhem; Sim’algaxhl Nisga’a; Sm’algyax; Statyemcets; Tsek’ene; Upper St’at’imcets; and Xaayda Kil/Kaad Kil.

Board authorities will also be allowed to develop a course locally to enable students to meet the new requirement.

“Engaging local First Nations and /or Indigenous leaders in developing such courses would be strongly encouraged, to help ensure that any such locally developed courses would contain appropriate content that is presented respectfully,” said the Ministry of Education in their notification.

The new requirement is part of the province’s commitment to the truth and reconciliation process.

READ MORE: B.C. marks 1st National Day for Truth and Reconciliation

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The ministry noted that this change to the B.C. graduation requirement is, “an important next step towards lasting and meaningful reconciliation, building on work to date to incorporate Indigenous content and perspectives into the provincial curriculum, educator professional development, and professional standards for certified educators in B.C..”

“The new graduation requirement will provide all B.C. students with the necessary time and opportunity to develop deeper understandings of the experiences, cultures, and histories of Indigenous peoples in Canada, in support of the K-12 mandate to develop the Educated Citizen,” said the ministry.

Until April 22 the province will be gathering feedback on the new requirement for the B.C. Graduation Program at engage.gov.bc.ca/Indigenousgradrequirement.

Feedback received will help to inform a finalized implementation plan for the new graduation requirement and that will be made available in August.


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