Oregon Indian Education Association (OIEA) is made up of thirty-three elected board members throughout the state of Oregon, including Title VII Programs and the nine Federally Recognized tribes’ Education Departments. OIEA has been in existence prior to 1974, with a handful of Native educators wanting to network and collaborate around native issues. At the forefront of educational issues facing tribal people are the high number of student dropout rates, over representation in special education, and underachievement in math and science areas. Although native educators have made strong strides in improving the education of AIANs, there remains a shortfall in the educational outcomes of AIAN students as compared to other ethnic groups.
The vision shared by the OIEA Board Members is to create collaborations with school districts, universities, and state officials to endorse an indigenous knowledge base that enhances, endorses and validates the higher learning of native students. With greater participation in the cultural determination of education, belief is that not only will native students begin to see their place in this world, but non natives will benefit from seeing how much indigenous knowledge can contribute to a new cultural pedagogy of learning.
The goals of OIEA are:
- Objective 1: Strengthen the basic foundational elements of Indian Education in Oregon: math, writing and science.
- Objective 2: Increase comprehension and critical thinking base on indigenous traditions and knowledge.
- Objective 3: Apply relevancies and motivation of education for AIAN students within school cultures by promoting positive cultural behavioral supports.
- Objective 4: Seek, implement and endorse Indigenous model of teaching and learning through curriculum development.