Some Final Observations & Concerns:
Students like the program for a number of reasons, not least of which is the fact that it is offered within the community indeed, the Band Council designated one of its buildings for the use of the program. Thus, students can attend school in the safe, familiar environment of their own community.
As Chief Myers observes, students are motivated by the simple fact that "the course is offered here in the community... And they really want to better themselves, so that if and when they leave home, theyll be able to find a specific job that interests them not just any unskilled work that they can get."
Financial obstacles for the learners are reduced through special EI and social assistance arrangements. In addition the MRD offers further subsidies to supplement the learners income while in the program. The intention is to ensure that the students can complete their studies without the added stress of juggling school, families and jobs.
The program is one of a number of Adult Basic Education programs offered in Aboriginal communities under the joint auspices of the local Chief and Band Council, the Federation of Newfoundland Indians and the Mikmaq Resources Development Corporation (MRD). ABE programs are currently offered to adult learners in the Aboriginal communities of Flat Bay, Bartletts Harbour and Corner Brook.
In addition to program subsidies, the MRD has provided financial assistance in the past to enable the program organizers to engage a coordinator to do outreach and publicity, administration of the program, liaison and coordination, some tutoring and counselling of students, if and when appropriate. There is currently some consideration being given by the MRD to the possibility of terminating the coordinators function in each of the current programs and negotiating directly with local secondary or post-secondary institutions in these communities to purchase seats in existing programs. If such a program approach is adopted, it is unlikely, for the purposes of this directory, that the program will be categorized as an Aboriginal ABE program as this directory defines them.