Reflections of Native American Teacher Education on Bear Ridge

Steven Locke


This study examines an elementary teacher education certification program delivered by a state university to Native American teacher aides on the reservation. Data were collected over two semesters using a Freirean critical theory framework to analyze the data and to explicate the problematic nature of Native American education. Analysis of the data indicated that the program reproduced Euro-American cultural values, was insensitive to Native American history or values, and did little to support individual teachers. Suggestions include the need for the program to acknowledge and address the historical cultural genocide that occurred in the education of Native Americans and the cultural and political hegemony of the teacher education program. More focus needed to be placed on supporting individual participants and their academic and cultural struggles in becoming teachers.


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