ERIC Number: ED339568
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1984-Sep-30
Reference Count: N/A
Enhancing the Quality of Life at Bureau of Indian Affairs Off-Reservation Boarding Schools. Final Report.
Takei, Yoshimitsu; Ryan, Patricia C.
This report examines aspects of life at Bureau of Indian Affairs off-reservation boarding schools (BIA ORBS) that might negatively influence the physical and psychological development of students. The project consisted of several phases: (1) telephone interviews with 40 former ORBS students; (2) intensive visits by research teams to three ORBS and five comparison private schools; (3) administration of quality of life questionnaires to teachers and students at the above schools; and (4) development of an intervention strategy. Contrary to the inhumane conditions of the past, there was no evidence of blatant or systematic abuse of students at BIA schools. Although survey results indicated that students were fairly satisfied with their schools, attrition rates of 40-50% suggested otherwise. Other major findings were that ORBS had problems with student drinking and fighting, and that students wanted a more rigorously academic education. Many difficulties appeared to result from excessive bureaucratization at BIA schools. Staff had no sense of collective responsibility for their school, there were few warm and trusting relationships between students and staff, and students became highly dependent on each other for comfort and support. A comparison was made between BIA schools and non-BIA boarding schools. Recommendations include structural changes in the BIA-ORBS relationship, school size, and staff work assignments; procedural changes related to basic philosophy and mission, problem-solving methodology, parent-school interaction, and school climate; and changes in school leadership and professional nature of staff. Survey and interview instruments are included. (SV)
Publication Type: Reports - Evaluative; Tests/Questionnaires
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: Office of Human Development Services (DHHS), Washington, DC.
Authoring Institution: Pennsylvania State Univ., University Park. American Indian Education Policy Center.