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American Indian Educators in Reservation Schools

Terry Huffman

Publication Year: 2013

The role of Native American teachers and administrators working in reservation schools has received little attention from scholars. Utilizing numerous interviews and extensive fieldwork, Terry Huffman shows how they define their roles and judge their achievements. He examines the ways they address the complex issues of cultural identity that affect their students and themselves and how they cope with the pressures of teaching disadvantaged students while meeting the requirements for reservation schools.

Published by: University of Nevada Press

Title Page, Copyright

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pp. 1-6


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pp. vii-viii

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pp. ix-xii

In the spring and fall of 2010, I met and interviewed twenty-one American Indian educators serving Native students enrolled in reservation schools. In this book I tell the story of how the people I met defined their primary roles as educators, the prevailing challenges hindering their efforts, ...

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pp. 1-10

The earth meets the sky in this part of America. I had just passed through a village where but a small number of souls live in a few dilapidated dwellings in one of the most remote districts of a South Dakota reservation. Cresting a ridge a few miles outside the village, I could not see a person, a building, or even a tree. ...

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1. Hope for a Better Tomorrow: Affinitive Educators and Facilitative Educators

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pp. 11-34

I had a little time between interviews and decided to look around the small community served by the elementary and high schools. The crumbling remains of a sidewalk led across a bridge spanning the creek and up the hill to where most of the village buildings lay. ...

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2. Every Reason to Succeed: Characteristics of the Educators

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pp. 35-52

Too late for lunch and too early for dinner, few people congregated in the restaurant at this time of day. My next participant, like a number of others, had selected a restaurant for the interview. Initially, I was a bit concerned about the quality of the voice recordings, given the background noise common to diners. ...

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3. Challenges Are Every Day: Prevailing Challenges Facing the Educators

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pp. 53-77

The morning was beautiful and clear. I waited in the large staff meeting room located in a doublewide trailer adjacent to the main building. I looked out the window up the hill as the morning breeze kneaded the prairie grass in a gentle swaying dance. The room was quiet and a bit dark. ...

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4. If I Made a Difference for One: Intrinsic Rewards Serving Reservation Students

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pp. 78-93

I got to the school just as dawn was beginning to break. Not sure exactly where the school was located deep in the reservation, I made sure to be early in case I needed to search the numerous back roads in order to be on time. I caught a glimpse of a school bus in the distance, and allowed it to guide me to the school. ...

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5. Not Every Child Is the Same: Reservation Schools in the Era of No Child Left Behind

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pp. 94-112

She kept her office neat and tidy. Although clearly a busy professional, the orderly appearance of her workspace suggested she did not allow the hectic nature of the job to overwhelm her. It didn’t take us long to realize our paths had crossed some twenty years earlier. ...

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6. Spread Like Wildfire: Importance of American Indian Educators

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pp. 113-129

I had never been to this particular reservation before and could not help but notice the lonely white crosses, typically adorned with small tributes, dotting the side of the road. Memorials to loved ones lost in traffic accidents. On one ten-mile stretch of the highway, I counted almost twenty crosses, nearly one cross every half mile. ...

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7. You Have to Know the Culture: Cultural Identity and Tribal Cultural Education

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pp. 130-151

Driving west across South Dakota making my way back home, the bright sun bore through the windshield so intensely that even with sunglasses I had to squint to see. It was impossible to miss the obvious cliché: with the research completed, I was literally riding off into the sunset. ...

Appendix. Methodology, Theoretical Framework, and Research with Native Peoples

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pp. 152-162


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pp. 163-172


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pp. 173-178

E-ISBN-13: 9780874179088
Print-ISBN-13: 9780874179071

Page Count: 192
Publication Year: 2013

OCLC Number: 828869836
MUSE Marc Record: Download for American Indian Educators in Reservation Schools

Research Areas


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Subject Headings

  • Indian teachers -- United States.
  • Indian students -- United States.
  • Indian reservations -- United States.
  • Indians of North America -- Education.
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