First Nations Studies provides services at schools with concentrations of First Nations students.
First Nations Studies is funded through an Education Formula Grant to Milwaukee Public Schools by the U.S. Department of Education, Office of Indian Education (Title VII of Elementary and Secondary Education Act, Part A, Subpart 1). The amount of the grant is determined by the number of First Nations students whose parents/guardians have completed and submitted to First Nations Studies a Title VII Student Eligibility Certification form. This can be done anytime during the year.
First Nations Studies provides the following:
- Classroom academic assistance
- Special education support
- Parent workshops and support
- District and community cultural workshops
- Assistance with authentic cultural resource materials
- After-school reading program
- Information on resources available to First Nations families
- Assistance to teachers on incorporating culture into the classroom
- Act 31 training for teachers
- Language revitalization classes
To find out more about the First Nations Studies program or to request a Student Eligibility Certification Form, please contact Talia Rosales, program secretary, at 414-902-7312.
First Nations Studies College Access Program
High school can be a challenging time . . . we are here to help!
The First Nations College Access Program can provide students and families with a variety of support services to transition through high school and beyond. If the student identifies as Native American, the services listed below can provide support in every phase of the high school experience.
The First Nations College Access Program will use the one-of-a-kind “Expanding the Circle” curriculum designed to assist Native American high school students with the transition to college and beyond through the use of culturally relevant activities.
To learn more, please contact the First Nations Studies Program College Access staff:
School Social Worker:
Click here for the First Nations Studies College Access Center information flyer.
Click here for the First Nations Studies College Access information flyer.
Click here for the First Nations College Access registration form.
- Who qualifies?
- Any MPS student in grades 9-12 who identifies as Native American/First Nations/indigenous.
- Tribal enrollment is not required.
- What does this program offer?
- After-school tutoring
- After-school college readiness, culturally specific activities
- Academic enrichment opportunities
- Tours of college and university campuses
- College application and essay assistance
- Workshops, field trips, and speakers to highlight careers and cultural interests
- Completion of a portfolio to organize transitional information and documents
First Nations Studies Program, MPS Culture and Nature Camp for students grades 2-6
The First Nations Studies program campers learn about their native cultures, languages, medicines, and teachings and about building community and the importance of Mother Earth. A two-week-long summer camp is facilitated in partnership with Mequon Nature Preserve, Ho-Chunk Nation Milwaukee Youth & Learning Center, and the MPS First Nations Studies program. The “Water is Sacred” camp focuses on freshwater and the freshwater industry. Campers learn to use digital observation technology kits to monitor vegetative species, use water monitoring equipment to measure water’s health, and explore ecosystems, including wetlands, prairies, and forests. Curriculum includes cultural traditions relating to water; water and the body; functions of wetlands, streams, rivers, and lakes; water around the world; water cycle; aquatic animals; fishing; and sailing the Denis Sullivan schooner on Lake Michigan. The Denis Sullivan schooner flies the Menominee Nation flag in honor of the masts of the ship.
- Wisconsin Act 31 is a set of statutory requirements put in place as a guide for all school districts in the state of Wisconsin. Wisconsin Act 31 is meant to support teachers and educators on how to integrate culture into the curriculum and how to collect and utilize authentic First Nations instructional materials.
For further information, please refer to the Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction's American Indian Studies & Wisconsin Act 31 PowerPoint presentation.
Wisconsin Public Television, the Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction, and the University of Wisconsin–Madison School of Education have created a new website called Wisconsin First Nations. This website is a collection of authentic and accurate resources for teaching about Wisconsin’s Native Nations. The Milwaukee Public Schools First Nations Studies program is one of the exemplar programs highlighted on the exemplar map that highlights innovative educators who can assist other educators who have questions regarding implementation of First Nations Studies into their classroom.
Wisconsin Public Television (WPT) Tribal Histories
WPT Tribal Histories documentaries share the history, culture, and traditions of Wisconsin’s American Indian nations and tribal communities. “Recorded in the natural settings of the regions that native people have called home for centuries, these films feature tribal members sharing the challenges, triumphs, and time-honored traditions that have shaped their vibrant communities across generations.” The following twelve videos from the WPT Tribal Histories have been released and are available online to watch: