Rocky View Schools recently announced that Cindy Stefanato will be the new Director of Indigenous Learning and will head the newly created learning branch for the division as of August 15, 2022.
The new Indigenous Learning branch will be part of RVS’ Learning Department and will support teachers and students in their learning journey toward truth and reconciliation. Stefanato will be joined by two other team members in the branch.
Superintendent Greg Luterbach says, “We've heard from schools a desire for some dedicated support to be able to help them with their efforts related to truth and reconciliation and embedding Indigenous ways of knowing into their classrooms.” While RVS has been providing support in the area, Luterbach says, “We've been providing that support, but to be honest, it’s been kind of on many people’s desks, and so we decided to create a team that’s dedicated towards our Indigenous Learning Branch.” With a plan in mind of having a dedicated team, the board of trustees then approved the budget and allocated some financial resources to be able to move ahead with the plan which will entail a team of three that will be tasked with supporting schools on the important learning journey.
Stefanato is a member of the Fort William First Nation and is fairly new to RVS having joined in 2021 as assistant principal at Glenbow Elementary School in Cochrane. Luterbach says, “Prior to that she had worked a number of years with Calgary Catholic School Division both as an assistant principal, but also as an education consultant with their Indigenous Learning Team.” Luterbach points out that Stefanato brings valuable experience to the new RVS position, “She’s done some of this work as a consultant working with schools and administrators and our local First Nations, for example, the Tsuut'ina, Stoney Nakoda, and Metis Nations. Working together to build those relationships and connections being able to provide support not just for Indigenous learners, but also for all learners to make sure that everyone is growing their knowledge about Indigenous history, culture, and understandings.”
Congratulations to Cindy Stefanato and the entire Indigenous Learning Branch.