Snuneymuxw First Nation and Nanaimo Ladysmith Public Schools have announced they have finalized a new school partnership for a school in the Cedar area.
The school district and Snuneymuxw broke ground on the site of the new Qwam Qwum Stuwixwulh School on Stuywut Street in March 2018, as the old site at Centre Street in Nanaimo was over 20 years old and becoming cramped. The school will follow B.C. Ministry of Education guidelines, but will also feature the Hul’q’umin’um’ language and according to a press release, will feature “the most current technology while encompassing traditional learning spaces.”
“This partnership will provide an opportunity for strong revitalization of language and culture for both indigenous and non-indigenous students,” the press release said.
“This new school is the culmination of 20 years of dreaming, planning and meeting for Snuneymuxw…” said Chief Michael Wyse in the press release. “Today, we are extremely proud and humbled of what we have erected in the Cedar area of our territorial and ancestral lands. This school not only represents a sense of pride for our community, it also signifies new opportunities both for our future leaders and our partnership with the school district.”
“Our First Nations partnerships remains to be a top priority for the school district,” said Scott Saywell, school superintendent, in the press release. “Embedded in the Syeyutsus reconciliation framework is direction to provide ongoing and meaningful learning opportunities for all students, staff and community groups. This partnership is exciting and new for both the district and Snuneymuxw community.”