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Three Day Summit
Native Brief: WASHINGTON - The 15th Annual National Indian Education Association Legislative Summit kicks off today in the nation's capital at the Holiday Inn Capitol. The three day summit will conclude on Wednesday.
The Legislative Summit is the leading advocacy and thought-leadership event for improving educational excellence, opportunity, quality, and cultural relevance for American Indian, Alaska Native, and Native Hawaiian students.
From low high school graduation rates to the lack of choice in high quality culturally based educational opportunities, Native students face great challenges. At the same time, President Barack Obama's move last year to improve education for American Indian and Alaska Native students provides new opportunities to help Native students succeed.
National Education Association Vice President Lily Eskelsen will be one of three keynote speakers for the summit.
Eskelsen, one of the highest-ranking labor leaders in the country, will speak on the final day of the Legislative Summit, Wednesday, February 15 during a breakfast on advocacy. An elementary school teacher from Utah, she was recently appointed by President Barack Obama to the White House Initiative on Educational Excellence for Hispanics, whose goal is to expand education opportunities and improve education outcomes for Hispanic students. A former president of the Utah Education Association, Eskelsen has also served as president of the Utah State Retirement System and the Children at Risk Foundation.
The opening session today, will feature a speech from William Mendoza, Director of the White House Initiative on American Indian and Alaska Native Education. An Oglala and Sicangu Lakota, who most recently served as a director and senior advisor to US Secretary of Education Arne Duncan, Mendoza leads the Obama administration's efforts to expand opportunities for Native students.
Also speaking on Monday is Charlie Rose, former General Counsel with the US Department of Education. A partner at Drinker Biddle & Reath, Rose spent more than 29 years advising educational institutions - including colleges and universities, for profit institutions, K-12 school districts and private schools - state government agencies and municipalities; large corporations; and tribal nations.
And on Tuesday, US Bureau of Indian Education Director Keith O. Moore will participate on a panel discussing federal policy on Native education during NIEA's day of advocacy on Capitol Hill. As Director of Bureau of Indian Education, Moore oversees 183 elementary, secondary, residential and peripheral dormitories - and two postsecondary institutions - in 23 states that serve American Indian children.
posted February 13, 2012 6:00 am est
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