February 15, 2007

Council on Indigenous Languages

Bill would create council to preserve, promote education of Ojibwe languageAs few as 15 fully fluent Dakota speakers reside in Minnesota and perhaps as few as 50 fluent Ojibwe speakers, according to Margaret Boyer of the Alliance of Early Childhood Professionals and the Dakota Ojibwe Language Revitalization Alliance. But a state council of stakeholders would be established to preserve and promote education of these languages if a bill introduced in the House last Thursday proves successful.

The bill would create a Council on Indigenous Languages with representatives of 32 stakeholders, including indigenous organizations, academic institutions and 11 tribes. The council would direct development of education programs for children and adults to learn how to speak, read and write in endangered native languages.

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