Faculty Profile - Sara Child

Sara Child

Sara Child

Facilitator, Faculty, Researcher

Adult Basic Education, Humanities & Social Sciences, Indigenous Education

Masters of Education Indigenous Language Revitalization (University of Victoria, 2017)

Bachelor of Education (Simon Fraser University,1991)

Subjects: Early Childhood Education, English, Human Service Worker, Indigenous Language Fluency, Kwak'wala Language

Sara Child has been an educator for well over 30 years. She is passionate about Truth and Reconciliation and in particular the role that Indigenous language revitalization must play in achieving the Calls to Action. Sara has developed numerous Indigenous language courses as well as NIC's newly implemented Indigenous Language Fluency Certificate. The certificate is a direct response to the TRC Calls to Action to develop certificate and diploma fluency building programs at the local college level. Of particular importance, Sara designed the program to support a local Indigenous pedagogy and approach to learning. As part of the certificate, Sara developed a dual language science course to explore local Indigenous land-based knowledge. The development of that course was a deliberate move to advance the recognition that Indigenous knowledge systems and sciences need to be honoured as equal to Western perspectives and sciences.  

Sara has also participated in numerous research projects to support the Indigenization and decolonization of research. In 2017, she completed a year-long research project gathering knowledge from Indigenous Elders in her home community of the North Island. That research with elders explored leadership concepts in Kwak̓wala, which were infused into a youth leadership framework, that Sara completed as part of her Master’s in Indigenous Language Revitalization. Since then Sara developed a comprehensive language revitalization research project called the Sanyakola Project. The proposal was submitted to Mitacs and the Sanyakola Project began in 2020. This research has brought together five Indigenous scholars to explore the development of a comprehensive language revitalization strategy, explore Kwakwaka̱'wakw Pedagogy in land-based environments, and support the development of Artificial Intelligence and speech-to-text technology to support the revitalization efforts for Kwak̓wala. A critical aspect of this groundbreaking research is that it is led, designed and delivered by an all-Indigenous research team.

“Exploring leadership through a localized lens is vitally important,” said Child. “Our languages encode the values, beliefs and codes of conduct that guide us to live our lives in wellness. Restoration of our language will help to restore relationships that were built upon firm foundations of respect, reciprocity, responsibility and reverence for the natural world, people, places and the land. In my humble opinion, there can be no truth to truth and reconciliation without the full support for the revitalization of Indigenous languages.”

Sara was also an instructor in NIC's Awi'nakola land-based ABE program that is offered at Mixalakwila Campus; the program sprung out of the Truth and Reconciliation talks among campus staff. Sara is very proud to be a part of a program that brings together students and staff in a holistic learning environment, draws on local elders, culture, language and student strengths and is a response to the calls to action of TRC. In the last few years, Sara has also helped to develop and launch the first-ever Indigenization plan for NIC in 2021 and sees this as the next vital step toward the transformation of the college that is required for NIC to become truly Indigenous serving.

Masters of Education Indigenous Language Revitalization (University of Victoria, 2017)

Bachelor of Education (Simon Fraser University,1991)

Professional Teaching Certification

Member BC College of Teachers

Bachelor of General Studies, Simon Fraser University

Minor Early Childhood Education

Minor Environmental Education

Certificate Aboriginal Language Revitalization

Post Graduate Certificate Indigenous Language Revitalization

Diploma Massage Therapy, West Coast College of Massage

ECC-104 Developmental Journey

ENG-013 Fundamental English Level I

ENG-014 Fundamental English Level 2

ENG-015 Fundamental English Level 3

ENG-025 Fundamental English Level 4

ENG-026 Fundamental English Level 5

ENG-027 Fundamental English Level 6

ENG-035 Intermediate English

ENG-052 Advanced English

ENG-098 Technical And Academic Writing AndýCritical Analysis

HSW-130 Ed Assist in Cross-Cultural Classroom

HSW-132 Cross-Cultural Social Analysis

HSW-137 Support Strategies for Skill DevelopmentýDevelopment in Cross-Cultural Settings

HSW-164 Foundations of Community Support

HSW-167 Support Strategies for Skill Development

HSW-170 Education Assistant/Community SupportýPractice Experience I

HSW-174 Human Service Practice Exp II

HSW-190 Education Assistant in the Classroom

ILF-101 Kwak'wala Immersion 1

ILF-102 Kwak'wala Immersion 2

ILF-103 Kwak'wala Immersion 3

ILF-104 Kwak'wala Immersion 4

ILF-105 Kwak'wala Immersion 5

ILF-108 Foundations in Indigenous EcologicalýKnowledge - Kwak'wala

ILF-109 Internship - Kwak'wala

ILF-110 Indigenous Language Revitalization andýTechnology

ILF-111 Pathways to Reconciliation and SocialýAction

KWA-096 Introduction to Kwak'wala

KWA-097 Introduction to Kwak'wala II

  • Master of Education Indigenous Language Revitalization 2017:

    The Masters program, at the University of Victoria, brought together Indigenous students from across Canada to explore the importance of Indigenous Language Revitalization to wellness of Indigenous nations and reconciliation.

  • Instructor, Indigenous Education Assistant Training Program, January 2015 to December 2017:

    I was honoured to be given the responsibility of Indigenizing the program offered at the Mixalakwila Campus.  Indigenization of the program was challenging, rewarding and exciting. 

  • Curriculum Development, Indigenous Language Fluency Certificate (ILFC): 

    I was responsible for the development and introduction of 3 Kwak̓wala courses and the ILFC program and have been teaching Kwak'wala with the support of fluent speakers since 2014.

  • Proposal Development, Funding Acquisition, Collaboration:

    For the past 25+ years I have written proposals and been responsible for funding acquisition of numerous training programs and language revitalization projects and supporting Indigenization and Decolonizing research practices.


  • Program recruiter, coordinator, Bachelor of Education Indigenous Language Revitalization 2010 to 2014:

    I was local community coordinator for this bachelor degree that was offered in partnership with the  KwaKwaka'wakw First Nations, University of Victoria and North Island College.

The views and opinions expressed here are those of the featured faculty member. These views and opinions do not necessarily represent those of North Island College.