One step closer to an agreement on education transformation with the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding between Indigenous Services Canada and the First Nations Education Council of Quebec

News release

May 4, 2021 — Ottawa, Unceded Algonquin Territory, Ontario — Indigenous Services Canada

Today, the Honourable Marc Miller, Minister of Indigenous Services Canada, and the Chiefs' Committee of the First Nations Education Council of Quebec (FNEC) signed a Memorandum of Understanding that will frame discussions for the development of a regional education agreement. This agreement is part of the transformation of education programs initiated by the Department in collaboration with First Nations. This transformation will meet First Nations' objectives and priorities in the area of education to promote the academic success of students.

The Minister and the FNEC Chiefs are now committed to developing a regional education agreement that will clearly define the roles and responsibilities of the parties. This approach includes funding for kindergarten to grade 12 education and will meet the demands of First Nations while taking into account students' needs. As a result, education outcomes will be improved and First Nations will exercise greater control over their children's education.

This is in keeping with the policy and approach that took effect on April 1, 2019, which supports control of First Nations' education by First Nations and ensures more predictable and suitable funding through new regional funding models.


"Education must be entrusted to those who are best able to provide an education that reflects the history, language and culture of the learners. We recognize the First Nations Education Council of Quebec's expertise and its knowledge of the real and specific needs of its members. The FNEC's members are truly the best qualified to manage this issue, which is at the heart of First Nations' priorities. This Memorandum will guide the development of a regional education agreement and its associated financial framework."

The Honourable Marc Miller
Minister of Indigenous Services

"One more step toward the common achievement of a change that fully supports the control of First Nations' education by and for First Nations in Quebec, as envisioned by the Chiefs in the early 1970s. A step toward a regional agreement on education based on the real and specific needs of the FNEC member communities in order to ensure the necessary means for present and future generations to reach their full potential and to blossom in the pride of their culture and identity."

John Martin, Chief of Gesgapegiag 

Quick facts

  • The FNEC is an association that is based on the collective strength of its 22 member communities in an effort to provide quality education to all First Nations children. The FNEC contributes to the complete takeover of and inherent jurisdiction over education by its member First Nations. The FNEC represents and defends the interests of this collective strength by promoting the realities of each Nation and respecting their identity, culture and traditions. Excellence, student success, cultural pride and control of education by and for First Nations are at the heart of its mission. For more information, visit

Associated links


For further information, media may contact:

Adrienne Vaupshas
Press Secretary
Office of the Honourable Marc Miller
Minister of Indigenous Services

Media Relations
Indigenous Services Canada

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