MMF: When it Comes to Preparing our Children for School, Pallister’s Government Receives a Failing Grade
Winnipeg, MB – On May 5, 2019, the Manitoba Metis Federation (MMF) and the University of Winnipeg’s Institute of Urban Studies issued a study on the school preparedness of Métis and non-Métis children in Manitoba. According to this study, the first to focus on the Métis, children in Manitoba fall behind the rest of Canada, but Métis children in the province fare even worse.
“The Pallister government is failing our Métis children. He is failing the children of all Manitobans,” said President Chartrand of the Manitoba Metis Federation (MMF). “Yet Pallister has already shown he would rather balance the books on the backs of our children than invest in real change. He would rather gamble with our future and with the future of all Manitobans. This is very concerning for all families.”
According to Canada’s Department of Finance, Manitoba receives $4.3 billion in transfer payments this fiscal year alone. The transfer payments are intended to support the provinces in the delivery of programs and services. Yet the study shows when it comes to early learning programs in Manitoba, children residing in poorer areas had higher odds of not being ready for school. The report also finds that more than one third of M 0233tis children in Manitoba are not ready for school.
“We pay hundreds of millions every year in federal and provincial taxes. What do we get in return?” said Chartrand. “Our children spend the rest of their elementary school and high-school years trying to catch up. This has far-reaching effects when they graduate and compete with their peers for university programs. This has far-reaching effects on employment. Pallister thinks he is saving a few dollars now, but the long-term costs to the provincial economy are staggering. His unwillingness to invest in early years programming short-changes all Manitobans. He is taking our hard-earned taxes to prop up his rich friends and punish the children, especially the children of our working poor.”
The findings are based on the Early Development Instrument (EDI), an internationally recognized assessment tool that assesses the school readiness of children in five areas: Communication Skills and General Knowledge; Emotional Maturity; Language and Cognitive Development; Physical Health and Well-Being; and Social Competence. Compared to non-Métis children, a higher percentage of Métis children were not ready in many of the EDI categories.
Metis Kids: Starting Behind – Infographic
Metis Kids: Starting Behind – Summary of the Early Development Instrument Findings
Believe in Yourself; Believe in Métis.
The Manitoba Metis Federation (MMF) is the official democratic and self-governing political representative for the Métis Nation’s Manitoba Métis Community. The Manitoba Métis are Canada’s Negotiating Partner in Confederation and the Founders of the Province of Manitoba.
For media information, please contact:
Barney Morin, Communications Coordinator
Manitoba Metis Federation
Office: (204) 586-8474 x277
Cell: (204) 391-0717