On February 24, 2016 the National Native American Boarding School (NABS) Healing Coalition met with staff from the White House Initiative on American Indian and Alaska Native Education (WHIAIANE) to discuss boarding school healing. WHAIANE agreed to work with NABS going forward to assist with outreach and also expressed hope that some of NABS’ requests were possible by the end of the current administration.

The meeting took place in conjunction with the Executive Council Winter Session for the National Congress of American Indians (NCAI). Several tribal leaders and members of NCAI were aware of the meeting and expressed support for the recommendations being presented by NABS:

  • Establish a National Commission to Address US Boarding School Policy and Effects
  • Carry out a Study to Publish a Report with Recommendations
  • Assist with and Support NABS’ Request for Information on Fate of Boarding School Students
  • Statement of Acknowledgment and Recognition from the President

Click here to read the full meeting materials which details of the four main requests presented to WHIAIANE.


White House Initiative on AIAN Education


Pictured from Left to Right: Rob Wexler, ED Office of General Counsel; Ron Lessard, WHIAIANE Chief of Staff; Jill Eichner, ED Office of General Counsel; Rita Jefferson, Lummi Nation Council Member; Andrea Carmen, NABS Board Member; Christine McCleave, NABS Executive Officer; Sandy White Hawk, NABS Board Member; Bill Mendoza, WHIAIANE Executive Director; Sarah Eagleheart, NABS Board Member; Jewll James, Lummi Nation; Marlene Helgemo, NABS Board Member; Patsy Whitefoot, NABS Board Member; Chase Iron Eyes, NABS Board Member; Ronalda Warito, NIEA; Yatibaey Evans, NIEA President.