Indian Education provides services for American Indian and Alaska Native students, such as tutoring, college and scholarship information, the Eagle Feather Graduation Celebration, monthly meetings for parents, and a culturally-based academic summer program.
Paulus Administration Center
Indian Education Dept.
1309 Ferry St SE
Salem, OR 97301
Shelby Maerz, Indian Education
Shelby Maerz has been leading Indian Education at Salem-Keizer Public Schools for approaching fifteen years, where she develops and implements programs for our nearly 700 Native students. She is a member of The Confederated Tribes of Grand Ronde, serving on the Tribal Education Committee. In partnership with Oregon tribes and a curriculum team Shelby developed a fourth grade curriculum on the nine federally recognized tribes of Oregon (Oregon Tribal Curriculum Project). As a Board Member for the Oregon Indian Education Association, she strives to promote Native education in the general curriculum, as well as working for academic and cultural resources for Indian Ed program participants. Shelby grew up in Oregon’s Willamette Valley, and received both her teaching credential and Masters in Education from Western Oregon University.
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Family nights are a regular event held on Thursday evenings at Bush Elementary School, located at 410 14th Street Southeast, Salem. Evenings begin with a simple dinner at 5:30pm. Classes are from 6:00pm-7:30pm, and include activities for students from Pre-K through 12 and adults. Examples include Culture Nights, Literacy classes, and parent education workshops.
The Indian Education Parent Advisory Committee (PAC) is a very important part of the Indian Education Program. Parents meet to discuss services for students, plan activities to support special events such as the Eagle Feather Graduation Celebration, and approve the annual federal grant application.
Children build literacy and math skills through Native based books, games and arts. Classes are provided for students in grades Pre K through 5th. Students can be joined by family members or friends. Participants practice literacy and math skills, learn reading and problem solving strategies, and take home culturally based books and math manipulatives.
Native culture classes are scheduled at various times during the school year. Examples of classes include dance, drumming, and crafting of Native arts. These classes will include as wide an age range as possible. When classes include skills that are more than some of the youngest children can manage, alternatives will be provided, for example, they might string larger beads and play Native based games.
Indian Education offers two sets of writing workshops. In the fall, the workshops focus on scholarship resources and applications, and in the spring the focus is on applications for summer programs for Native students such as Konaway Nika Tillicum and Bridge of the Gods. Both workshops include a session on strategies to answer essay questions, which are a key component of most applications.
Study hall is available on every Thursday for which activities are scheduled. A secondary math teacher and additional tutors are available to help with homework questions. This is an excellent time to get extra one-on-one help.
A second study hall is available on Tuesdays at the Siletz area office located at 3160 Blossom Drive NE, Salem. More information for this study hall is available by calling Sonya Moody-Jurado at 503-390-9494.
These classes address topics that help parents build skills and knowledge of resources available to help them with everyday responsibilities. Several different topics are covered during the school year. Presentations include a variety of topics such as solving homework hassles, communication, personal finances, and problem solving.
In May of each year, all Indian Education students who complete high school and earn either a diploma or GED are honored at a Native based celebration. The celebration includes a color guard, a drum, gifting of graduates, and a reception.
Summer School is a three-week program for students in grades 2 through 8. Language arts, math and cultural arts are taught through a Native based social studies theme. One or more field trips support the curriculum content.