Fonds 342 - Northwest Territories. Department of Education, Culture and Employment fonds

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Northwest Territories. Department of Education, Culture and Employment fonds

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  • Multiple media

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  • [1952]-2012 (Creation)
    Northwest Territories. Department of Education, Culture and Employment (1992-present)

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Physical description

ca. 25.1 m of textual records and other materials

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Administrative history

The Department of Education, Culture and Employment was established in August 1992 with the amalgamation of the Department of Education with the Department of Culture and Communications.

The Department of Education, Culture and Employment has been responsible for the following: providing school programs and services; museums and heritage programs; public library services, television and radio programs and services; culture and language programs and services; public and private sector training, income support programming, post-secondary education and college programs and services. The department's objective is to enable the people of the Northwest Territories to reach their full potential and to contribute to the cultural, social and economic development of the Northwest Territories.

The Directorate and Administration Activity provides for the overall management and administrative support under the direction of the Deputy Minister who recommends the goals, objectives and standards of the department to the Minister. This includes strategic planning, development of legislation and policy, budget co-ordination, capital planning, financial services and systems support. It is also responsible for leading government-wide reform and transfer of income support programs to interested communities and enhancing the creation of sustainable jobs through a number of programs and services, such as the labour force plan.

The Advanced Education Activity operated between 1993-1994; it combined all major government-training functions within the department. This involved the administration of the Public Service Career Training Program, Employment and Post Secondary Student Financial Assistance Programs, as well as the monitoring and setting standards for continuing education. The Student Services Division, which was part of this activity, began decentralizing its counseling services to Career Centres within various regions in 1993-1994. The Advanced Education Activity coordinated literacy projects and delivered the following adult training programs: the Northwest Territories Apprenticeship Training Program, Construction Worker Training Program, Training On-the-Job Program and Short Term Employment Program. Education and employment training for social assistance clients, training for present and future government employees, college diploma and certificate programs, short-term skill training courses and university transfer programs were delivered by this activity. College programs administered by Arctic College were also funded under this activity. Arctic College delivered education programs geared specifically to the needs of the northern workforce and economy. In 1994-1995, the College completed its decentralization by establishing head offices in Iqaluit and Fort Smith. This resulted in one college serving the Nunavut area and one serving the western portions of the Northwest Territories. The College operated with funds received from the Department of Education, Culture and Employment. The College also generated its own funding from tuition fees, room and board charges, investment income and contracts with organizations for the delivery of training.

The Culture Activity delivered programs with a cultural emphasis such as the Museums/Heritage program, Public Library Services, Television and Radio Services and the Language Bureau. The Museums/Heritage program was responsible for collecting, preserving, researching, documenting and presenting the cultural and natural history of the Northwest Territories. This function was achieved through museum and archival programs at the Prince of Wales Northern Heritage Centre and the Northwest Territories Archives, as well as through the provision of advice, technical support and financial contributions supporting community heritage projects. Other territorial programs administered by the activity included archaeological resource management and the geographic names research program. Library Services provided some financial assistance to community libraries through grants and contributions programs. The service provided funding to municipal councils for the operation of library programs, as well as the training of local staff through regional and distance education courses. The Language Bureau provided interpretation, translation and other communications services to the Government of the Northwest Territories and the Legislative Assembly in all official languages of the Northwest Territories, except Cree. The Language Bureau included both an aboriginal language and French language section. Aboriginal languages broadcasting and community services were the major focus of Television and Radio Services. This service was involved in the production and broadcasting of programs through Television Northern Canada (TVNC) and provided contributions to community broadcasting societies and regional native communications societies to support the production and broadcast of culturally relevant radio and television programs in aboriginal languages. Television and Radio Services was also responsible for the maintenance of television and radio facilities in 27 small communities throughout the Northwest Territories. The Culture Activity combined with the Advanced Education Activity in 1995-96 to become the Culture and Careers Division. However, Library Services and Television and Radio Services became the responsibility of the Educational Development Division and formed the basis for Information Networks.

In 1994-1995, the Culture and Careers Branch was created by combining programs and services related to Culture and Heritage, Museums, Language Bureau, Colleges and Continuing Education, Career Development and Student Financial Assistance, Employment Support programs, Human Resources Development for Government of the Northwest Territories employees and Child Day Care. This branch intended to increase flexibility for their programs and services in order to allow communities and regions to have a greater role in determining their own priorities. The division was responsible for a long-term plan for human resource development, which included mining industry training programs, career counseling for community staff and youth employment initiatives. In 1999-2000, this division was renamed Advanced Education and Careers Division when the programs and services related to culture, arts, heritage, museums and language were moved to the Educational Development Division which was then renamed the Education and Culture Division. The Advanced Education and Careers branch provided a range of programs and services related to career development, employment development and support programs, the College, continuing education and income support. The branch continued to coordinate human resource development activities across the Government of the Northwest Territories.

The Educational Development Branch, formerly the Schools Activity, oversaw the delivery of K-12 schooling, inclusive schooling and residence programs; development and implementation of K-9 curricula; the implementation of secondary curricula adapted from Alberta and the monitoring and evaluation of school jurisdictions. This division was also responsible for the delivery of professional training programs; support for the development and delivery of early childhood programs; and the development of public information and distance learning systems, including public libraries; television, radio and internet services. The Educational Development Branch placed an emphasis on the community development of programs, improved access and the use of aboriginal languages and student support. Between 1995-1996, Library Services and Television and Radio Services were moved from the Culture Activity to the Education Development Branch to form the basis for Information Networks. The focus of Information Networks was to cooperate with other Government of the Northwest Territories departments and private sector organizations in order to improve telecommunications links to communities. The department provided information and system training, as well as providing for the establishment of interconnecting networks for all educational institutions and municipal networks in all communities with more than one educational institution. This division was renamed the Education and Culture Branch in 1999-2000, when the cultural, arts, heritage, museums and language programs were transferred from the Culture and Careers Division.

In 2005-2006, there were three major changes that impacted Education, Culture and Employment. The first change was establishment of an Official Languages Division based on recommendations made in a report by the Special Committee on Official Languages to the Legislative Assembly. The recommendations were accepted by the Legislative Assembly and served as the basis for a number of adjustment to the Official Languages Act; establishment of the Official Languages Board and the Aboriginal Language Revitalization Board; publication of an annual Official Languages Report and the issuance of the Aboriginal Culture and Language Directive for school authorities. The report also called for the establishment of an organizational structure to lead the GNWT involvement in language matters. As a result, effective April 1 2005 a Languages Division was established that reported to the Deputy Minister. This Division will serve a leadership role in language policy and regulatory matters. As well, Division staff will direct the coordination of language activities across the GNWT. In 2005, the GNWT also decided to consolidate labour services functions with employment activities. As of April 1, 2005 the Labour Services Unit and responsibility of the Labour Standards Board, were transferred from the Department of Justice to Education, Culture and Employment. The third change that came into effect on April 1, 2005 was the transfer of public housing and rent subsidies from the NWT Housing Corporation to the Department. This action was linked to the broader initiative of the GNWT and legislators to establish a general policy framework for all income security programs and to consolidate programs where possible.

Custodial history

Scope and content

The textual material was generated by the activities of the Directorate, Education Committees, the Language Bureau, Board Operations, Early Childhood and School Services Division, Culture, Heritage and Languages Division, Policy and Planning Division - later known as Strategic and Business Services, the Education Programs and Evaluation Branch (predecessor of the School Services Division), Education Operations and Development Division, Income Support programs and the College and Careers Development Division.

The material created by the Income Support Division consists of records related to reforms to the Income Support program, the redesign of the Student Financial Assistance program, internal audits of regional offices, a study on welfare use in the NWT and financial support related to energy and utilities.

The material created by the Directorate includes records related to departmental committees and meeting records from the Senior Management Committee, Executive Committee, Directors and Superintendent meetings, Minister and Chair meetings, Building and Learning Strategy Committee, the Strength from Culture Guiding Committee, School Finance Committee and Strategic Planning Committee, Information Steering Committee, the Subcommittee for Human Resource Planning for Division, the Nunavut Implementation Committee, the Residential School Interagency Committee and Traditional Knowledge Committee. In addition, there are records related to the Senior Secondary Community Schooling Policy, the Seniors Fuel Subsidy Program and the operation and administration of Arctic College. As well, there are Deputy Minister chronos [1994-2010], Ministerial chronos [1997-2010] and Ministerial correspondence [2001-2002].

The material created by the Education Committees consists of reports and minutes from the Fort Smith Region, including the Trout Lake Community Education Committee, Fort Providence Community Education Committee, and Wrigley Community Education Committee. The files that were created by the department's Board Operations Section includes material related to Senior Management Committee meetings, Directors and Superintendents meetings, Educational Development Branch meetings, the Sahtu Divisional Board of Education, the Building and Learning Strategy Steering Committee, Lester B. Pearson College and the Governor Generals Award Program.

The files from the Early Childhood and School Services Program include program review material, newsletters produced by the division for licensed childcare facilities and material from the School Health Steering Committee. In addition, there are division planning and program implementation material for the Aboriginal Language Program and Child Care User Subsidy Program, minutes and agendas from Subject Advisory Committee, Director's Meetings, Staff Meetings, Regional Board Meetings and Student Presidents' Meetings, correspondence and meetings with the Education Boards, files related to the development of health curriculum, the Special Committee on Health and Social Services, and Student Support Consultant related files. The remaining files relate to development of goals and objectives for the division, professional development for staff, planning and delivery of the Child Daycare Program Symposium, as well as copies of agreements and memorandum of understanding between the Department and the Federal Government and provinces for the Western Canadian Protocol, and Minority Language and Second Language Instruction.

The material from the Education Programs and Evaluation Branch and its predecessor the School Services Division consists of curriculum and lesson plan material such as Inuuqatigiit and Dene Kede, and material developed for use in the classroom such as alphabet and number posters in Gwich’in, Dogrib, South Slavey, North Slavey and Chipewyan. In addition, there is material from the Linguistic Programmes Division that includes Inuktitut language development and Slavey language development material.

The files from the Language Bureau include the newsletter Dene Yati, language terminology lists and training material for the Interpreter/Translator program that was delivered by Artic College but produced by the Language Bureau, as well as files from Language Coordinators Meetings and Language Bureau Meetings. There is also material related to french language service models, aboriginal language task force, and the Community Language Leaders Award. There are minutes from various languages' standardization committees, the advisory committee for the Canada-Northwest Territories Co-operation Agreement for French and Aboriginal Language, and the advisory committee for the Interpreter/Translator program.

The textual material from the Culture, Heritage and Language Division was created by the Prince of Wales Northern Heritage Centre. The files date from 1980-2003 and the bulk of the material consists of minutes of meetings from Section Heads Staff Meetings, Cultural Affairs, Collections Committee, Exhibit Committee and Senior Management Committee (ECE). In addition, there are files from the Public Records Committee and the Records Management and Deputy Ministers Committee, which includes comments from the NWT Archives. There are also promotional and development files from Education Services for events such as Heritage Day, Amazing Sundays and Open House, as well as files from the Geographic Names program. Other material consists of policies, Heritage Training Assessment from the Museum Advisory Management section, a file concerning the reorganization of Culture and Heritage Division, strategic planning files and an Audit Bureau report on the Prince of Wales Northern Heritage Centre. In addition, there is a file concerning the development of a brochure for the museum, policy and procedures for the community display area, files related to exhibit development and gallery renovation, a guide to the Dogrib Caribou Skin Lodge exhibit, and a guide on oral traditions research. As well, there are policies, directives and meeting minutes relating to the NWT Arts Council. There are records from the Heritage Advisory - Community Programs section, as well as administrative files detailing the Division's activities relating to various land claims agreements. There are records which relate to the Prince of Wales Northern Heritage Centre (PWNHC) retrofit, addition and renovations, which took place between 2003 and 2006. These include a geotechnical report, needs analysis, upgrade and renovations project brief, and an implementation strategy. There are also sound recordings consisting of an interview with Darcy Arden and stories told by George Blondin. As well, there are 8753 images from the office of Technical Services at the NWT Archives that date from 1979 to 2006, which document staff, exhibits, events, and projects at the Prince of Wales Northern Heritage Centre.

The material from the Strategic and Business Services Division - previously the Policy and Planning Division - includes records related to department-specific acts and regulation amendments, job and program evaluations and strategies, and briefing binders. Copies of various agreements between ECE and other government agencies are included. Also included are meeting minutes and reports from senior management conferences and meetings, Executive Committee meetings, Directors/Superintendents meetings, Aurora and Arctic College Board of Directors meetings and correspondence, audited financial statements from the various school board divisions and Business Plans developed by the division. Files also include material related to the revision of the Education Act and the Student Financial Assistance program, as well as reports and communications plans. This material dates from 1983 to 2003. Further accessions contain Deputy Head Chronos dated 1996, correspondence and planning documents relating to Education Act and Student Financial Act Amendments, strategic planning reports on the Towards Excellence initative and the Healthy Children initiative, planning and correspondence for the Minister's Forum on Education, Executive Committee minutes and correspondence, Memorandum of Undertanding between the GNWT and the NWTTA and YK#1, minutes from the Constitutional Affiars Committee, correspondence and planning documents regarding the South Slave Divisional Education Council, correspondence and planning pertaining to the Pension Plan, and correspondence and meeting minutes from the Inuvialuit Communications Society Committee Meetings, the Native Communications Society, the Inuit Broadcasting Corporation, and the Advisory Committee on Educational Television. This material dates from 1987 - 2003. This material also includes a Memorandum of Understanding and related correspondence between the Minister of Education, Culture and Employment and Minister of Health and Social Services regarding the Social Assistance program transfer dating from 1995 - 1997.

The material from the Education Operations and Development Division includes records related to departmental organization, correspondence with divisional boards of education, reports and statistics on residences and correspondence regarding the community action fund. It also includes a file on the transfer of responsibilities of Sir John Franklin school to YK District #1, as well as a review of options for schooling of children in Ndilo.

The material from College and Career Development Division includes records related to the delivery and development of programs that includes correspondence, copies of program development material such as policy, framework documents, action plans, manuals and final reports. In addition, there are program review files related to the Student Financial Assistance Program and Income Support reform. The remaining files relate to strategic initiatives for the division including the integration of income support and career development, results of consultations that were done regarding the consolidation and transfer of social assistance programs to the department and division of the Northwest Territories and its impact on the College and Career Development Division and establishment of two colleges. In addition, there are reports related to the closing and future uses of Akaitcho Hall, Kivalliq Hall and Ukkivik Residence. There are also committee and working group records such as reference material, reports, correspondence, terms of reference and minutes from the Postsecondary Education Review Steering Committee, NWT Standing Committee on Teacher Training, NWT Teacher Qualification, Adult Basic Education Curriculum Development, Teacher Induction, GNWT Training Group, Secondary Diamond Industries Working Group, and the Prior Learning Assessment and Recognition Steering Committee.

The remaining textual material was generated by a variety of sources including community literacy projects, Teacher Education Programs, Arctic College, the Baffin regional ECE office, and the Labour Standards Board. The files from Arctic College includes correspondence, decision papers, program review and evaluation files for the Apprenticeship and Trades Program, Early Childhood Education Program, Mill and Mining Training, and a report on Adult Basic Education (ABE) Program. There is also one file that contains a copy of an Arctic College Graduate Follow-up Survey report. There is also a package of material that was produced by the Department of Education and the Arctic Public Legal Education Society to aid in students learning to interpret and translate trials. The Baffin regional office files include meeting minutes of the Keewatin Divisional Board of Education from 1990-1992 and the Baffin's service delivery plan for 1995/96. One box of text was generated through the Nunavut Unified Human Resouce Development Stategy, in which the GNWT Dept. of Education, Culture and Employment played a lead role in various committees and projects. The files from the Labour Standards Board include meeting minutes, policies and procedures, and an annual report.

The bulk of the photographic material is in slide format and depicts community buildings (schools, churches, hospitals), people, scenery, activities and special events in the following communities: Hay River, Fort Simpson, Fort Norman, Rae, Port Radium, Lac La Martre, Fort Good Hope, Fort Franklin, Fort McPherson, Tuktoyaktuk, Yellowknife, Coppermine, Jean Marie River, Fort Liard, Nahanni region, Aklavik, Fort Resolution, Fort Smith, Fort Providence, Wrigley, Fort Fitzgerald, Arctic Red River, Reindeer Station, Whale Cove, Norman Wells, Iqaluit and Rocher River. A portion of the photographic record documents the activities of the Language Bureau from approximately 1973 to 1994 and includes groups shots, individuals at work and a 1975 Interpreter's Conference. Photographs of school openings, special needs children, departmental outreach programs such as literacy, internal departmental functions, and school and college graduating classes are in various formats. In addition, there are blueprints, photographs and negatives, as well as textual material that was generated by the renovation project of Our Lady of Good Hope, Roman Catholic Church in Fort Good Hope.

There are also approximately 2400 colour and black and white slides from the Tuktoyaktuk Traditional Knowledge Project, that document elders, locations and traditional ways of life.

The 35 films, primarily produced by the Government of the Northwest Territories, deal with subject matter such as prohibition in the north, education and the Mackenzie River Bridge.

The majority of the 1971 videocassettes were produced by or acquired by the Radio and Television Services Division. Most of the productions were developed between 1981 and 1995 from the Department's studio location in Yellowknife. Featured programs include "The Tube" and "The People." In addition, there are a variety of unique productions about northern subjects, traditional knowledge, and coverage of major political and social events in the Northwest Territories, both as finished programming and as raw footage. The remaining videos consist of master copies and raw footage from the Caribou Skin Tent Repatriation Ceremony, as well as documentation of the Dogrib Caribou Skin Lodge Project. There are also electronic records consisting of 379 digital images and textual material pertaining to this project, as well as two sound CDs containing narration, which was used during production of the Dogrib Caribou Skin Lodge video.

The eleven 8mm tapes and 7 DVDs from the Tuktoyaktuk Traditional Knowledge Project consist mainly of interviews with elders regarding toponyms and establishing shots of the region and town.

The audio material consists of audio cassettes that originated from the Language Bureau of the Department of Education, Culture and Employment and contains sound recordings of an Elder's Conference held in Yellowknife in 1991 and meetings about Traditional Knowledge that were held in 1990 and 1993. In addition, there are four audiocassettes that contain North Slavey language lesson material. There are lesson plans that accompany the sound recordings. The bulk of the sound recordings consist of audiocassettes from three projects coordinated by the Geographical Names Program. The first series of recordings includes interviews with elders from Paulatuk about traditional geographical names in the area. The second series are interviews conducted in 1987 by Alice Legat and Territorial Toponymist Randy Freeman, with Sachs Harbour elder William Kuptana. The remaining series contains recordings from the Dogrib Names Study. The recordings include extensive elders interviews conducted in Rae and Lac La Martre between 1989 and 1990. There are also a number of sound recordings that relate to Radio and Television Services video productions from the 1980s and 1990s. The vast majority of the audio cassettes relate to interviews done by the Tuktoyaktuk Traditional Knowledge Project from 1991-1993. The interviews with elders are about place names and traditional lifestyle of the people.

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      Language and script note

      G-1999-072 manuscripts (files 2-1, 2-2, and 2-3) are written in French.

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      Restrictions on access

      Access restricted under the Access to Information and Protection of Privacy Act.

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      Finding aids available for some accessions.

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      Physical description

      ca. 12,473 photographs : b&w, col. Slides, prints and negatives
      ca. 25.1 meters of textual material
      24 blueprints
      1968 videocassettes : Betacam, VHS, Umatic, Hi 8, Betamax, 8mm tape, DVDs
      35 films : 16 mm
      205 sound recordings : 189 audio cassettes, 14 DAT audio cassettes, 2 sound CDs
      3 electronic records : 3 CD-ROMS.
      1 poster


      See accession files for copyright restrictions.

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      • English

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