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Yankton Sioux Tribal Code

Last Revised: 1995

TITLE XV - YANKTON SIOUX TRIBAL EDUCATION AND SCHOOL CODE

 

Sec. 15-1-1 Official Title

The official title of this Act shall be " The Education, Language and Cultural Preservation of the Ihanktowan Oyate.


Sec. 15-2-1 Preamble

In recognition of the strong connection between tribal sovereignty and educational self-determination, and the vital importance of the N/Dakota Language and culture for our future as a people, the General Council of Ihanktowan Oyate enact the Education, Language and Cultural Preservation Code to provide the highest quality of education, and to promote and preserve our N/Dakota language and culture.


Sec. 15-2-2 Short Title

The Education, Language and Cultural Preservation Cods of the Ihanktowan Oyate may be cited as the "Education and School Code."


Sec. 15-2-3 Findings and Declarations

A. The General Council of the Ihanktowan Oyate, after through review of tribal history, N/Dakota language and culture, the educational needs of tribal members and resident Indians, and trust duties of the United States, find and declare that

1. The Ihanktowan Oyate is a sovereign Indian tribe, and the United States Government has repeatedly recognized the inherent sovereignty of the Tribe in the Treaties of 1851 and 1852 and in the course of dealings between the sovereigns;

2. The United States has a sacred trust relationship with and corresponding responsibilities to the Indian nations and tribes, including the duty to provide for the educational needs of the Indian people;

3. In the Treaty with the Yankton Sioux, 1858, 11 Stat. 743, the United States expressly undertook to provide for the educational needs of the Yankton Sioux Indians;

4. In recent years the United States Congress has reaffirmed and recognized its trust duties in the Indian Self-Determination and Educational Assistance Act of 1975, the Tribally Controlled Schools Act of 1988, and related federal statutes; and

5. To realize the full potential of its sovereign authority and the benefits of the trust relationship with the United States, to preserve tribal languages and cultures, and to provide its people with a full and fair opportunity to develop their ideas, skills and personal potential, the Ihanktowan Oyate must implement its own tribal standards of education which equal or exceed state or federal standards and as the same time serve to promote the traditional values of the Ihanktowan Oyate.

B. The General Council of the Ihanktowan Oyate further finds and declares that:

1. High quality education is critical to the future of ourselves, our children and unborn generations, and it is the concurrent duty of the United States and the Ihanktowan Oyate to provide the highest quality of education for all our people;

2. Our N/Dakota language and culture are gifts from the Great Spirit to our people which must always be treated with the highest respect;

3. Since education is, in part, the transmission of culture and values, education within schools and other educational institutions chartered or operated by the Ihanktowan Oyate shall include the teaching of the N/Dakota and Ihanktowan culture and values;

4. N/Dakota language is hereby declared the official and native language of the Ihanktowan Oyate, and it is the official policy of the Ihanktowan Oyate to oppose any outside authority, system or person which denies or debases Ihanktowan language, culture or values;

5. These declarations are in accord with the policies of the Congress of the United States, which recognize a primary means by which a child learns is through the use of such child's native language and cultural heritage, and ~instructional use and development of a child~s non-English native language promotes student self-esteem, subject matter achievement and English language proficiency;" 20 U.S.C. §3282 ("Bilingual Education Act")

6. Indeed, the Secretary of the Interior has been directed by Congress to "take into account the special needs of Indian students and the support and reinforcement of the specific cultural heritage of each tribe" in promulgating educational standards for Bureau of Indian Affairs Schools; 25 U.S.C. §2001; and to fulfill this statutory mandate, the Bureau of Indian Affairs has declared its policies to "provide for a comprehensive multi-cultural education program including . . . teaching and learning strategies that will reinforce, preserve and maintain Indian . . . languages, cultures, and history;" 25 C.F.R. §32.4 and (7). In keeping with Article 27 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights adopted by the General Assembly of the United Nations, the Ihanktowan Oyate declares all persons within tribal jurisdiction belonging to racial, ethnic, political or linguistic minorities shall not be denied the right to enjoy their own culture, practice their own religion, or use their own language.


Sec. 15-3-1 General Council Policy

A. The General Council hereby acknowledges its duty and responsibility to provide the highest quality education possible to the Ihanktowan Oyate people, and hereby declares its policy to ensure that the educational institutions shall provide educational services and opportunities to tribal members and resident Indians which equal or exceed the educational services and opportunities provided by the agencies of the State of South Dakota and the federal Government; and

B. The General Council declares its policy to promote the N/Dakota language, culture and values through all tribal education institutions.


Sec. 15-4-1 Tribal Educational Standards

A. The educational standards of tribal elementary and secondary educational institutions shall equal or exceed the educational standards promulgated by state and/or federal elementary and secondary educational institutions.

B. The Yankton Sioux Tribal Business and Claims Committee shall have the authority to adopt such policies and procedures as are necessary to ensure compliance with Sec. 15.4.1(A) of this Code. The Yankton Sioux Tribal Business and Claims Committee may delegate to the Tribal Department of Education or another tribal agency such authority as is necessary to perform the functions described above; provided that the Yankton Sioux Tribal Business and Claims Committee shall continue to review the exercise of such delegated authority and shall retain a veto power over any policy or regulation of the Tribal Department of Education or other delegate tribal agency promulgated pursuant to such authority. Such veto powers may be exercised within thirty (30) days after notification of such policy or regulation.

The policies and regulations which may be promulgated pursuant to this sub-section include:

1. Standards for classification and accreditation of tribal educational institutions;

2. Minimum administrative, staffing and curriculum standards; and

3. Enforcement procedures and mechanisms to ensure compliance with this Education and School Code.

C. The Yankton Sioux Business and Claims Committee shall appoint a tribal Director of Education to supervise compliance by all tribal elementary and secondary educational institutions with this Education and School Code and the policies and regulations pursuant to this section.


Sec. 15-4-2 Administrative Procedure

Prior to any exercise of authority provided for in Sec. 15-4-1(B) by the Yankton Sioux Tribal Business and Claims Committee, the Tribal Department of Education, or any other delegate tribal agency, the Yankton Sioux Tribal Business and Claims Committee shall:

A. Adopt by reference the federal Administrative Procedure Act, 5 U.S.C. §551 et seq. or the State of South Dakota's Administrative Procedure and Rules, SDCL §1-26 et seq.; Or

B. Enact tribal administrative procedures to establish guidelines for the exercise of authority by this Education and School Code.


Sec. 15-5-1 Curriculum Standards

A. All tribal elementary and secondary educational institutions shall provide instruction conforming to all relevant policies and regulations, promulgated pursuant to Sec. 15.4.1 by the Yankton Sioux Tribal Business and Claims Committee, the Department of Education, and any other tribal delegate agency.


Sec. 15-5-2 Government and History Courses

A. In tribal educational institutions, there shall be given regular courses in Government, including the Constitution of the United States, the Constitution of the Ihanktowan Oyate, and the State of South Dakota, the Treaties of 1851 and 1858, and other relevant statutes, such as the Indian Civil Right Act of 1968. Such instruction shall not begin later than the opening of the eighth grade and shall continue into high school to the extent required by policies and regulations promulgated pursuant to Sec. 15.4.1 above.

B. Additionally, in tribal educational institutions, there shall be given course on the history of the United States of America and the history of the Great Sioux Nation, including instruction on the lives and achievements of American leaders and Great Sioux Nation leaders.


Sec. 15-5-3 N/Dakota Language and Cultural Courses

A. Status of N/Dakota Language and Culture. N/Dakota language and culture are vital, and have the potential to equal or surpass any other language or cultures of the world in their beauty and expressiveness. Students are fully capable of fluency in N/Dakota language and the English language, and as the Congress of the United States has recognized in the Bilingual Education Act, supra, complimentary instruction in both native languages and cultures and the English language and culture enhance overall educational skills and achievement of students.

B. Parental Involvement. It shall be the policy of the General Council of the Ihanktowan Oyate to encourage parents to teach their children N/Dakota language and culture, and tribal educational institutions shall involve parents in the process of education to the maximum extent practicable.

C. Eminent Leaders and Elders. It is recognized that among the Ihanktowan Oyate and the Great Sioux Nation, there are certain persons who possess knowledge above and beyond those attained by academics with degrees. Those people endowed with cultural and linguistic knowledge of the Nakota/Dakota/Lakota language and culture shall be recognized, according to policies and regulations promulgated pursuant to Sec. 15.4.1 above, and shall be used in tribal educational institutions to the maximum extent practicable.

D. N/Dakota Language Curriculum. Tribal educational institutions shall offer courses on N/Dakota language and culture beginning in the ______ grade and continuing into high school as required by the policies and regulations promulgated pursuant to Sec. 15-4-1 above.


Sec. 15-5-4 Religion Instruction

A. Tribal educational institutions may offer an electives courses in Nakota/Dakota/Lakota religion, but no student shall be compelled to attend such course.

B. Students not participating in a course offered pursuant to Sec. 15.5.4 (A) may be released, with parental permission, from the course of religion instruction. Parental permission will be obtained for students attending such courses.

C. Students not participating in a course offered pursuant to section Sec. 15.5.4(A) may elect to take other courses not relating to religion. Students not participating in such course shall be assigned during the time that the courses are offered pursuant to Sec. 15.5.4 (A).


Sec. 15-6-1 Tribal Education Department

A. Establishment of a Department. A Department of Education is hereby established with the duty and power to Administer the Education Code and Regulations, unless such powers are otherwise delegated by Tribal law.

B. Employment of Director of Education. The Business and Claims Committee shall employ a Director of the Department of Education, who shall be a full time employee of the Tribe and who shall maintain an office at the tribal headquarters. The Business and Claims shall establish the qualifications and salary of the Director.

C. Powers and Duties of Director. Subject to review of the Business and Claim Committee, the Director of the Department of Education shall exercise the following powers:

1. Administer and enforce the Education Code. The Director shall have the power to administer and enforce the Education and School Code and Regulations. In doing so, the Director shall:

a. Exercise authority over administration and operation of the Department of Education functions, and over compliance with this code and these regulations by tribal educational institutions subject thereto;

b. Maintain current knowledge of the law and procedures in administration and enforcement of federal and tribal educational laws, and serve as the principal professional and technical advisor to the General Council on all matters relating to education within the territory of the Tribe;

c. Coordinate all available tribal and non-tribal resources to implement this code and these regulations and to generally improve the quality, condition and progress of education within the territory of the Tribe;

d. Establish uniform data gathering, compliance and reporting of information related to the performance of schools under this code and these regulations and such information as is necessary to ensure compliance with other applicable law;

e. Report the results of data gathering and compilation, make recommendations concerning the progress and improvement of education and recommendations concerning the implementation of the Education and School Code and regulations; and

f. Exercise such powers as are reasonably necessary to carry out the functions of the Department of Education.

2. The daily teaching load per teacher in departmentalized classes shall not exceed 150 (ADM) except in activity type classes such as art, music and physical education.

3. Each school shall provide, in absence of a regular teacher, a substitute who meets substitute teacher qualifications.

D. School Enrollment and Attendance Policies.

a. (i) Enrollment in any tribally operated schools shall be available to: (a) any child who is a member of a federally recognized Indian tribe or Alaskan Native Village; (b) any child who is one-fourth or more Indian blood; and (c) any other child upon payment of tuition set by the board of directors of such school.

b. (ii) Attendance at schools shall be mandatory for any child who is a member of the Tribe from 6 years of age through 16 years of age.

4. Length of School Term and Day. All schools shall provide an educational program of studies which is at least one hundred eighty (180) instructional days per school term. Regular program activities for students shall be in instructional activities, exclusive of lunch (which must be at least thirty (30) minutes per day), in accordance with the following: Kindergarten - 2.5 instructional hours per day; grades 1-3 - 4.5 instructional hours per day; grades 4-6 - 5.0 instructional hours per day; and grades 7-12 - 5.5 instructional hours per day.


Sec. 15-6-2 Teacher Certification

A. Teaching Certificate. The Department of Education shall issue a single basic teacher certificate. The type of certification of the holder shall be indicated by endorsements on the certificate under each of the following:

1. Level of academic preparation;

2. Type and validity of certificate;

3. Educational staff assignments;

4. Teaching majors; and

5. Subjects qualified to teach.

B. Academic Preparation. The level of academic preparation that has been completed shall be indicated on the certificate from the following;

1. Less than a bachelors degree;

2. Bachelors degree;

3. Masters degree

4. Specialist's degree; and

5. Doctoral degree.

The requirement for teaching in the elementary grades through grade twelve is a bachelors degree.

C. Type and Validity of Certificate. The type and the validity of the certificate shall be indicated on the certificate from the following;

1. Teacher certificate (1 or 5 years); and

2. Limited teacher certificate ( 1,3 or 5 years). Teachers shall be certified for the periods shown on their teaching certificates.

D. Educational Staff Assignment Endorsements. The education staff assignments shall be indicated on the teaching certificate from the following:

1. Superintendent or Advanced Superintendent;

2. Elementary or Secondary School Principal;

3. Elementary School Teacher;

4. Secondary School teacher or Secondary School. Teacher with middle school/junior/senior high school endorsement;

5. Teacher's Aides;

6. Education Specialist (including Special Education, Librarian, Psychological Examiner, etc.); or

7. Counselor.

Superintendents shall have earned at a masters degree, and Advanced Superintendents shall have earned a doctoral degree. Elementary or Secondary Principals shall have earned at least a bachelors degree, with the intention of completion of a masters degree in administration. Elementary or secondary school teachers shall have earned at least a bachelors degree. Teachers aides who have earned less than a bachelors degree must be supervised by certified elementary or secondary school teacher.

E. Teaching Majors. The teaching majors which are approved for endorsement are the following:

1. Agriculture;

2. Business education;

3. Distributive education;

4. Native or Foreign Language;

5. Home Economics;

6. Industrial arts/technology;

7. English~ language arts;

8. Mathematics;

9. Science;

10. Social Science;

11. Trades and Industries;

12. Art;

13. Health and physical education;

14. Music; and

15. Computer Science.

Teachers shall be certified for the academic areas for which they were granted their bachelors and/or masters degree, and for the academic areas for which they earned 12 hours or more of college credit. Teachers shall be qualified to teach the subjects for which they are certified.


Sec. 15-6-3 Eminent Leaders and Elders

It is recognized that among the Ihanktowan Oyate and the Great Sioux Nation, there are certain persons who possess knowledge above and beyond those attained by academic with degrees. These people endowed with cultural and linguistic knowledge of the Nakota/Lakota/Dakota language and culture shall be recognized, according to policies and regulations and shall be used in tribal educational institutions to the maximum extent practicable.


Sec. 15-6-4 Minimum of Program of Instruction

A. Kindergarten. The curriculum for the kindergarten shall provide children with experiences which emphasize language development, native language, and performance of:

1. Language skills (observing, listening and speaking);

2. Exploration of environment (number, space, and time relationships, natural science);

3. Psychomotor and socialization development;

4. Development of imaginative and creative tendencies; and

5. Health education.

B. Elementary school. The elementary instruction programs grades one through six - shall include, but not be limited to:

1. Language Arts;

2. Mathematics;

3. Social Studies;

4. Sciences;

5. Fine Arts; and

6. Physical Education;

Additionally, each school shall integrate the following content areas into its curriculum:

1. Career awareness;

2. Environmental and safety education;

3. Health education;

4. Metric Education; and

5. Computer literacy.

C. Middle School/Junior High School. The instructional program shall reflect the school~s philosophy and the needs of the student and the community. It shall be part of a progressive development that began in the elementary school which proceeded it and continues to the secondary program which follows:

1. The curriculum shall include, but not be limited to, the following required instructional programs in each grade level:

a. Language Arts (one unit per year);

b. Social Studies (one unit per year);

c. Mathematics (one unit per year)

d. Science (one unit per year);

e. Fine Arts and practical arts (one unit per year);

f. Computer literacy (one unit per year); and

g. Physical education (one unit per year);

2. The following shall units shall also be integrated into the curriculum:

a. Career exploration and orientation;

b. Environment and safety education;

c. Metric education;

d. Consumer Economics; and

e. Health Education.

3. N/Dakota language shall be offered each year for members of the Yankton Sioux Tribe and other interested students.

D. High School. The instructional program shall reflect the philosophy of the student, the school, the community and the Tribe. It shall reflect an awareness of the changing world.

1. The curriculum shall include, but not be limited to, the following required instructional programs in each grade level:

a. Language Arts;

b. Communication skills;

c. Mathematics;

d. Science;

e. Fine Arts and practical arts;

f. Vocational Education; and

g. Physical Education.

2. The following areas shall also be integrated into the curriculum:

a. Career exploration and orientation;

b. Environmental and safety Education;

c. Metric Education;

d. Consumer economics; and

e. Health education.

3. N/Dakota language courses shall be offered to the members of the Yankton Sioux Tribe and other interested students. High school education shall provide program coordination with feeder school, career direction and preparation for independent living through employment, post- secondary education, and/or marriage.


Sec. 15-6-5 Student Rights

All tribal education institutions shall ensure that the constitutional, statutory, civil and human rights of students, including a respect for tribal judicial systems, are respected and preserved. For example, ensuring that students have the right to be free from cruel and unusual punishment, exercise freedom of religion, speech and the press; and have the right to be free from unreasonable search and seizure.

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