Government signs 5-year agreement for NORTEP, NORPAC students
- EFN Staff | September 23, 2015
The Ministry of Advanced Education has signed a five-year agreement to support the operation of the Northern Teacher Education Program (NORTEP) and the Northern Professional Access Program (NORPAC).
NORTEP/NORPAC is a partnership of northern school divisions, bands, the University of Regina and the University of Saskatchewan, to provide aboriginal-specific teacher education degree programs with northern and indigenous content and up to three years of arts and sciences courses required for other professional university degree programs. This includes pre-nursing under the new provincial model, as well as a Bachelor of Arts degree in indigenous studies. NORTEP was initiated in 1976, followed by NORPAC in 1989.
Since 1976, NORTEP has enabled 475 students, mostly of First Nations and Métis ancestry to graduate with a bachelor’s degree and since 2007, 62 with a master’s degree in education. Since 1989, 81 students have graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in Native Studies through NORPAC.
“Students who attend school in the north are having a tremendous impact on our province, particularly for northern Saskatchewan schools and communities,” Advanced Education Minister Scott Moe said. “Saskatchewan’s First Nations and Métis people are one of our greatest resources and are helping to meet the growing demands of our labour market.”
“NORTEP/NORPAC has been at the forefront of closing the gaps in education for almost 40 years, thanks to the support of both universities and Advanced Education,” NORTEP/NORPAC President and CEO Herman Michell said. “We are pleased with the new five-year agreement. It will allow us to continue raising the quality of life in the north by delivering university programs.”
The Government of Saskatchewan has made significant investments in post-secondary education for First Nations and Métis students, with more than 16,000 Aboriginal students taking post-secondary classes across Saskatchewan, a 29 per cent increase in enrolment since 2007-08.