1971 Chief Jimmy Bruneau School Opening
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Chief Jimmy Bruneau School was built in Edzo (Behchokǫ̀), in 1971 due to the perseverance of Chief Jimmy Bruneau and the community of Behchoko. This also established the Rae-Edzo School Society, the first native run school board in Canada where the Tłı̨chǫ people were given the rights to control their own school, including the hiring of teachers. Chief Jimmy Bruneau, who upon the opening of the school, stated, “I have asked for a school to be built… on my land… and that school will be run by my people, and my people will work at that school and our children will learn both ways: our way and the white man’s way.” Tłı̨chǫ elder, Elizabeth Mackenzie, interpreted and explained the words of Chief Jimmy Bruneau, saying, “…one person would be like two persons: One, knowing everything of the white culture and one, knowing of our ancestors’ culture. That person would become very strong for if we know everything like two persons… there may be no one greater than us.” It is from this interpretation that comes our school and regional educational motto, Strong like Two People. The school strives to continually improve academically as well as culturally, with culture camps, Tłı̨chǫ language classes and traditional skills classes.