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American Indian Education KnowledgeBase

This KnowledgeBase archive includes content and external links that were accurate and relevant as of September 30, 2019.

The American Indian Education KnowledgeBase is an online resource to aid education professionals in their efforts to improve the education of American Indian students and close the achievement gap American Indian students have faced in public, Bureau of Indian Education, and other schools.

Indian Education Funding

The Indian Education Act of 1972 provided funding for special programs for Indian students attending public schools on and off reservations. The current version of the Indian Education Act is Title VI of the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA). Title VI focuses on Indian, Native Hawaiian and Alaska Native education and supports the efforts of school districts, Indian tribes and organizations, postsecondary institutions, and other entities to meet the unique educational and culturally related academic needs of American Indian and Alaska Native students so that they can meet the same challenging state student academic achievement standards as all other students.

Title VII funding supports three major activities: Grants to school districts, special programs, and national activities. Formula grants are given to school districts and Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA) operated or supported schools based on the number of Indian children and the state's per-pupil expenditure for education. Grants go only to districts in which there are at least 10 Indian children or the Indian children make up at least 25 percent of the total enrollment. Districts in California, Alaska, and Oklahoma, and those located on or near reservations, are exempted from this requirement. Each local district receives at least $3,000. Special Programs are funded by competitive grants that state education agencies (SEAs) and districts, Indian tribes and organizations, and federally supported schools for Indians can apply for funding up to five years. Currently funded activities include demonstrations for early childhood projects and professional development. National activities include research on Indian education.

Formula grants to local school districts can fund culturally related activities, early childhood and family programs, academic enrichment programs, career preparation activities, and substance abuse prevention, and other programs meeting the needs of Native students. These programs must be developed in participation with and get written approval from a committee that represents parents of Indian children, teachers, and, if appropriate, Indian students in secondary schools. Special Programs grants fund similar types of programs.

An additional resource explaining Title VI:

Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) Reference: Title VI--Indian, Native Hawaiian, And Alaska Native Education

The contents of this website were developed under a grant from the U.S. Department of Education and are intended for general reference purposes only. However, those contents do not necessarily represent the policy of the U.S. Department of Education or the Center, and you should not assume endorsement by the Federal Government. Some resources on this site require Adobe Acrobat Reader. This website archive includes content and external links that were accurate and relevant as of September 30, 2019.