In this session, you will:
- think about how education presumes particular knowledge of pre-service and practicing teachers
- shift the way that you plan and engage in professional development as a leader
- consider current initiatives guiding professional development
- discuss teacher confidence and capacity in the inclusion of Indigenous topics and themes
Featured Guest
Nick is a proud Kanyen'kehà:ka and member of the Mohawks of the Bay of Quinte. He is a father, partner, uncle, and educator. Like many Indigenous People, coming from a family background that has been deeply impacted by colonization, sharing truth alongside messages of hope and resiliency through the vehicle of education is what interests and drives Nick.

Nick has worked in education for over 15 years in many roles including: an OCT certified teacher, a school board Indigenous Education Lead, and more recently supporting the work of Indigenous Education on a provincial level.

Grounded by the incredible support and generosity of Elders, Knowledge Keepers, community, family, and friends has allowed Nick to share space in a variety of educational settings. In life and in the education world, to move forward with a good mind, Nick has always believed that the foundation of this journey is rooted in strong relationships built on respect, understanding, and reciprocity.
Dr. Sean Lessard is from Montreal Lake Cree Nation in Treaty 6 territory. He is an award-winning writer, international speaker and researcher in the field of Indigenous education. Sean is an Adjunct Professor at the University of Regina and faculty member of the University of Alberta. Sean has been awarded the Pat Clifford
emerging researcher award by the Canadian Association for Teacher Educators as well as the Myer Horowitz Foundation outstanding dissertation award at the University of Alberta. Sean was recently named the Most Distinguished Alumni at Lakeland College and an international award for outstanding research. His work focuses on Indigenous youth empowerment and leadership including the development of his not-for-profit Indigenous youth bursary and wellness program that has contributed over $150,000 in the past 3 years to Indigenous high school and post-secondary students in Canada.
Etienna is from the Sturgeon Lake Cree Nation and grew up in Treaty 8 territory. Etienna has teaching experience in both First Nation community schools and in provincial schools in Alberta (public and Catholic). Etienna completed her Master's in Secondary Education at the University of Alberta. Etienna currently works provincially as an Indigenous Education consultant, coach and independent contractor. Etienna has created sessions and teacher resources for surrounding Edmonton school districts and educational organizations throughout Alberta and Saskatchewan. Etienna has a passion for assisting teachers in their professional learning journey and has created professional development experiences on topics such as Residential Schools, Myths…Stereotypes and Images of Indigeniety, The TRC and the Calls to Action, Indigenous Knowledge and Pedagogy, and Treaty Relationships.

Land Based curriculum writing, teacher resource development, and community research are a few of Etienna’ s most recent projects.
Troy is a husband, father of two. He lives and is a member of Kenhté:ke Kanyen’kehá:ka or Mohawks of the Bay of Quinte, more commonly referred to as the Tyendinaga Mohawk Territory. He has been involved in Indigenous Education for the last 24 years as a classroom teacher, facilitator, and currently holds the position of Indigenous Education Lead for the Hastings and Prince Edward District School Board. In addition to his work in his local District, Troy has organized and facilitated an annual Provincial Indigenous Education Leads Gathering that is going into its 9th year. He has also worked for the Ministry of Education as the Co-Chair of the Provincial Indigenous Focused Collaborative Inquiry Initiative. He has been a reviewer and consultant on several First Nations Métis and Inuit resources and was a contributing writer for the text book; Aboriginal Peoples in Canada, OSSTF Common Treads Curriculum Resource, Full Circle: First Nations, Métis and Inuit Ways of Knowing, and one of the lead writers for an on-line Professional Learning Module on Indigenous history and perspectives. Most recently, he has worked with Nelson Publishing on the enhanced Social Studies curriculum supports.