Earlier this year I was writing quite a few posts about how great it was working at Hodgson Downs. Well, recently my experiences there haven't been that great at all.
It's a long story, and to be honest i don't quite know where it starts or ends. But it does feature the following:
- some teachers putting the language program under the microscope after a year of barely taking an interest
- the same teachers cutting the program in half and showing very little support of language and culture
- the same teachers not acknowledging the commitment and effort that me, community members and the two teachers involved in the program put in... without any specific funding from the school or ed. dept.
- the cutting down of the program at the very same time it was starting to grow... we'd just started working on teaching the high school kids traditional songs, which is really quite special
my job is already hard enough and working for these endangered languages is already a very steep uphill battle. to have these extra obstacles placed in front of us was very difficult and upsetting.
last week, i didn't go to Hodgson Downs because I needed a break from it.
Now I feel a bit better and this week I'll go back and start re-assessing where we're at and what to do from here.
All this isn't a disaster. If it means that I now work purely with the community and not with the school at all, then we'll be able to do some great stuff. It's just an absolute shame (and also a bit of an outrage) that the school will have no language and culture content in it's curriculum.