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Sámi Education

Pigga Keskitalo, Kaarina Määttä and Satu Uusiautti

This book is a pioneering work. It discusses special characteristics of the education of Sámi people, an indigenous people living in Northern Europe. The book provides a comprehensive study of indigenous school research and special features of Sámi education including problems and opportunities that teachers and pupils confront daily. The purpose of this book is to support the realization of indigenous peoples’ education based on their own cultural premises. New, reformative pedagogical models and culturally sensitive teaching arrangements that could enhance Sámi education are the focus of the book. It is aimed at everyone who is interested in indigenous peoples’ educational conditions and is based on the authors’ research cooperation in the field of Sámi education.


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Making the Dream of a Sámi School Come True: Voices from the Field


The first national Sámi Pedagogy Conference was held in Inari, Finnish Lap- land, in 8-9 December 2011. The conference was organized by units that provide Sámi research and education: University of Lapland, Regional State Administra- tive Agency of Lapland, The Sámi Education Institute and Giellagas Institute. The purpose was to gather Sámi-speaking teachers and educational authorities of the Sámi administrative district and discuss the connection between research and education. The aim was to listen to experts of Sámi education and try to figure out means to support their role and to develop pedagogical methods in Sámi teaching. Giving voice to experts of indigenous peoples’ education is important when aiming at promoting development that respects indigenous peoples’ values and traditions. We support the idea that the aim of educational research is to support and protect human rights and fundamental freedom and right to pursue social and economic development. This chapter answers two main questions: what are the most salient disin- centives to the realization of Sámi pedagogy in the opinions of the experts of Sámi education and how could the originality of Sámi pedagogy be furthered according to the perceptions of the experts of Sámi education? Disincentives to the Realization of Sámi Pedagogy The participants list included disincentives to the realization of Sámi pedagogy and they could be categorized into ten categories. (1) Economic resources The learning material office of the Sámi Parliament is responsible for the...

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