Media Coverage of Michigan’s Underfunded Native Tuition Program

This Detroit News article has a premise that supports the need for Michigan to appropriate more money to the tuition waiver and does an adequate job of summarizing the history of the program, except for this small paragraph about the purpose of the Mt. Pleasant boarding school:

The native boarding schools were part of a national movement aimed at educating native children so they could get training in a skill to sustain a livelihood. In shutting down the exchange, the state agreed to fund higher education for Native Americans.

This is a sugar-coated annotation for what was really a disturbing and disgraceful time in American history.

WKAR: Survivors of Indian Boarding Schools Tell Their Stories


An excerpt:

Starting in the late 19th century, tens of thousands of Native American children were taken from their reservations to Indian Boarding Schools. The goal was to assimilate Native Americans by replacing their traditional ways with those of the majority of Americans.

In a new documentary, called “The Indian Schools, the Survivors’ Story”, Native Americans in Michigan tell their memories of the boarding schools. For most of them, the experience was painful and humiliating. WKAR’s Gretchen Millich has our story.

Edith Young is a native of Alaska who now lives in Michigan. As a child, she was forced to leave her parents to live at an Indian Boarding School in Seattle. In the film, she says although she’s 80 years old, the memories still hurt.

“We were yelled at and slapped. In the 3rd grade, I asked the teacher why she was teaching that Columbus discovered America when Indians were here first. She came over and slapped me across my face. To be humiliated in front of the class, I’ll never forget that.” Continue reading