Cultural Connections October 2023 Update

Cultural Connections, ESU 2’s US Dept. of Education’s Demonstration Grants for Indian Children and
Youth Program’s Accessing Choices in Education has begun the 2023-24 schoolyear. ESU 2, our Tribal
partners from the Omaha and Winnebago Tribes and our school district partners Bancroft-Rosalie,
Homer, Tekamah-Herman, Emerson-Hubbard, Pender Lyons-Decatur, and Oakland-Craig continue to
provide culturally relevant student opportunities, supports, and educational choice for Native American
students and their families.

The CC team continues to grow! Project Director Dr. Chris Stogdill has been joined by long-time
Bancroft Rosalie school counselor Ronda Ras.

Highlights for 2023 (so far) include:

  • As of September 30, 2023, there have been 358 total requests serving 475 students since the
    portal went live.
  • Cultural Connections has contracted with Homer Community School and Bancroft Rosalie
    Public School for the schools to provide mentoring, tutoring, and student success services.
  • Literacy resources and additional culturally relevant home resources purchased and distributed
    to the districts.
  • Beading session at Bancroft-Rosalie, Homer and Emerson-Hubbard schools.
  • Additional students have completed their Certified Nursing Assistant (CNA) courses and are
    preparing for their certification test. They are following other students who successfully
    completed the coursework and exam last year.
  • Eight students enrolled in Omaha Language from Nebraska Indian Community College.
  • June 11-16, 38 students traveled to Washington, D.C. and participated in a Native American
    themed Close-Up trip.
  • June 27-28, Food Sovereignty workshop allowed 28 students to learn about traditional cooking
    methods and recipes from Chef Anthony Warrior (Muscogee (Creek) Nation).
  • June 20-23, Summer multi-day camp/mini workshops at the Neihardt Center. 58 students
    participated in activities including ribbon shirt/skirts making, traditional dance and song, Native
    cooking, moccasin making, beading, and lacrosse. Extra K-6 activities: beading, traditional
    games, dream catchers, and intro to gardening. Ideas & suggestions were discussed at monthly
    parent advisory meetings.