Now more than ever, as we strive to strengthen tribal sovereignty and have accurate representation in the U.S. Census, we must ensure Native students have greater visibility in schools, treaty obligations are fulfilled, and programs designed to meet the needs of Native students are appropriately funded and directed.
Tribal enrollment helps support Native American students
American Indian and Alaska Native students are eligible to receive unique educational supports from a variety of programs. However, many Native students do not receive the services they need and qualify for—simply because they are not identified as Native.
Properly identifying Native youth helps ensure appropriate program funding, uphold treaty obligations, and track student achievement. It also suggests how to create school- or district-wide engagement plans for reaching out to Native families and caregivers. The companion family resource guide, Native Youth Count can help clarify the circumstances in which Native students are eligible for different services.
Students up to two generations removed from a family member still qualify for many programs and services. Check with your district’s Title VI coordinator to explore available supports.
Students may qualify for services and benefits outside of Indian Education programs. Contact your district’s Indian Education director/staff or school administrator for support. You may also reach out to [email protected].
If a heritage language affects a student’s learning, regardless of what is spoken at home, the student may qualify for Title III/English learner supports. Discuss options with your school’s Title III coordinator.
You can start the conversation about identification anytime. Some especially good times are the beginning of the school year or when you move.