Celebrating the present and transforming the future through equitable and sustainable First Nations education


AFN Education has always worked to support First Nations in their efforts to further Treaty and inherent rights to education and First Nations Control of First Nations Education, which includes:

  • Equitable and sustainable funding for First Nations education within a lifelong learning context;

  • Quality of education based on First Nations driven education systems;

  • First Nations driven timelines and priorities; and

  • First Nations language recognition and revitalization.


First Nations first published the concept of “Indian Control of Indian Education” in 1972. In 2010 the Chiefs in Assembly endorsed the updated and adapted document First Nations Control of First Nations Education as an AFN policy document.

At the 2016 AFN Annual General Assembly Resolution 16/2016 mandated the AFN to enter into an honourable process to develop recommendations to support First Nations Education Reform. Following this mandate, First Nations – Government of Canada Terms of Reference for Joint Collaboration was created and adopted in November 2016.



The 2017 federal budget announced $90 million over 2 years to support First Nations students. Budget 2017 also announced the Government will undertake a comprehensive and collaborative review with Indigenous partners of all current federal programs that support Indigenous students who wish to pursue post-secondary education. The purpose of the review will be to ensure that these programs meet the needs of individual students while supporting attendance at, and completion of, a post-secondary degree or credential.


On March 22, 2016, Prime Minister Trudeau tabled his first federal budget. An historic $8.4 billion over 5 years in investments will be made on Indigenous issues, including lifting the 2% cap on education programming. Specifically, the federal budget invested $3.7 billion over 5 years for First Nations education, including $969 million for education infrastructure and $275 million over 5 years for languages and cultures.


First Nation Directors of Education Forum 2018

February 21-22, 2018
The Hilton Lac Leamy, Gatineau, QC

Hosted this year on the traditional territory of the Algonquin Nation in Gatineau, Quebec, the First Nations Directors of Education National Forum is an event that brings together over 800 First Nations directors of education, educators, administrator government officials, leaders, and those actively engaged in the First Nations educational cross Canada. The Forum provides a unique opportunity for participants to gather to share perspectives, to engage in critical dialogue, and to network with each other to build positive and constructive relationships.

Learn More


To provide specialist advice regarding various aspects of regional First Nations education, five joint national Task Teams were established, including: Funding Mechanisms, Statutory Funding Framework, Early Childhood Education, Post-Secondary Education, Measurement and Mutual Accountability. In 2017 two more national Task Teams will be added to focus on Infrastructure and the unique needs of Northern and Remote Communities.

Each Task Team is incorporating regional First Nations frames of reference in all discussion in order that all developments are steeped in and build on existing regional systems that honour the diversity and autonomy of First Nations across Canada.

The Joint Task Teams focus on the following areas and are mandated by Operational Terms:



The Joint Task Teams meet regularly to develop recommendations for education reform. From there recommendations are moved through the joint process for collaboration.

Joint Process for Collaboration

Memorandum to Cabinet

Budget 2016 and the Joint Collaborative Process are a unique opportunity to transform the way that First Nations education is funded.

For more information please review our Memorandum to Cabinet Presentation 

Education Staff

Janice Ciavaglia

Veronica Wemigwans
Executive Assistant

Julie Williams
Sr. R&P Analyst

Jarrett Laughlin
Special Advisor

Dakota Edwards
Administrative Coordinator

Vaughn Sunday
Sr. Policy Analyst

Renee St. Germain
Sr. Policy Analyst

David Peters
Sr. Policy Analyst

Assembly of First Nations