Social Work Perspective on American Indian Education in Wyoming, A
thesisposted on 27.04.2019, 00:00 by Remi A. Bullock
The history of education about and for American Indians in the United States is rooted in cultural elitism. Beginning in the 19th century and continuing into the 20th century, American Indian children were forcibly taken from their families and placed in boarding schools for assimilation. These boarding schools were run by the U.S. government and evidenced the U.S.’s goal to rid the country of American Indian culture; this was a matter of public policy. Racism plagued the U.S. education system for decades, and despite contemporary legislation to move away from this marginalization of American Indian perspective in education, the social injustice in many ways persists. According to the ethical code enforced for the social work profession, social workers must be frontrunners in the promotion of social justice. Because of this ethical obligation, a social work lens must be utilized to understand the current state of addressing the injustice of marginalization of the American Indian perspective in education across Wyoming. Wyoming Enrolled Act 119 was passed in 2017 and is currently being implemented with a final implementation date of 2022. The goal of this project was to analyze the impact of American Indian Education policy and programming for greater inclusion of and knowledge about the experiences of Native people in Wyoming. Furthermore, a social work perspective was used in this research to frame the analysis. This social work perspective additionally provides a pathway for the continuing promotion of social justice around issues related to historical oppression and contemporary absence of the American Indian perspective education in Wyoming.