American Indian Educators in Reservation Schools
Publication Year: 2013
Published by: University of Nevada Press
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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, the most sig-nificant intrinsic rewards they perceived, and the unique pressures associated ...
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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. The emptiness of the landscape betrayed the notion a school ...
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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. I carefully stepped over the broken glass scattered on the ground outside a large building that at one time had ...
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Too late for lunch and too early for dinner, few people congregated in the res-taurant 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. However, I was more worried about whether the participants would ...
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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. The only light came from the windows lining the trailer, but a hill still partially blocked the bright ...
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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. Traveling over the twisting, paved roads with the haunting ...
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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. She had been a graduate student in the university where I taught upon completion of my own graduate work. ...
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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. The crosses appeared more frequently as I neared my ...
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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. I had conducted the final interview just that morning and, filled with a sense of accomplishment, I ...
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Page Count: 192
Publication Year: 2013