A Cree bilingual school in Saskatoon, set for construction later this year, has received a funding boost.

While the province of Saskatchewan provided funding to construct the St. Frances Cree Bilingual school, the Greater Saskatoon Catholic School division says many other aspects of the school still need funding. These include specialized learning spaces, cultural spaces, or playgrounds.

At the school divisions pow wow in Saskatoon Friday morning the First Nations Bank of Canada announced a $100,000 donation toward the school. The donation will be used to fund the nēhiyawitwāwin: A Culture, Identity and Learning Partnership & Elders’ Cultural Teaching Centre.

Success in educating Indigenous youth is required in order to grow Indigenous prosperity,” said First Nations Bank of Canada CEO Keith Martell in a media release. “St. Frances Cree Bilingual School is such a place, and we are proud to add our support.”

We’re so grateful for the support of Keith and First Nations Bank of Canada to fund this space so Elders can build those relationships necessary to pass on the language, teachings and culture so students can be secure in their First Nations’ identity,” added Diane Boyko, Board of Education Chair at Greater Saskatoon Catholic Schools.

The St Frances Cree Bilingual School is scheduled to begin construction in late 2022.

(PHOTO: GSCS Board Chaird Diane Boyko and FNB CEO Keith Martell after the donation announcement.  Photo courtesy of the Greater Saskatoon Catholic Schools Twitter @GSCSNews.)