In Memoriam: Barbara Burnaby

Barbara Burnaby, October 2005, Gatineau

Barbara Jane Burnaby passed away on February 2, 2018 in St John’s, Newfoundland. She was 74.

Barbara completed both a Bachelor of Fine Art (1965) and a Master of Arts in Linguistics (1972) at the University of Toronto. In 1979 she completed her PhD in Education Theory at the Ontario Institute for Studies in Education (OISE); her dissertation was entitled Roles of Languages in Education for Native Children in Ontario.

That same year, Barbara joined OISE as Research Associate for ESL and Native Language research. Prior to her appointment as Associate Professor in the Department of Adult Education at OISE in 1986, she served as the Executive Head for Sponsored Research. From 1991 to 1995 she served as Chair, Department of Adult Education, and from 1995, she was appointed Professor in the Department of Curriculum, Teaching and Learning. In 2000, Barbara left OISE to serve as Dean and Professor of language policy and education in the Faculty of Education at Memorial University of Newfoundland. One of her first projects as Dean was to travel to the north coast of Labrador with Bernadette Power; together they visited communities and schools in order to promote cooperation between the Faculty of Education and Labrador communities.

Barbara was a prolific researcher and writer, contributing to over 30 books in her lifetime. In the mid-1980s she worked on a series of English as Second Language (ESL) professional development modules with Jill Bell and Jane Love. In the late 80s, she worked with faculty at OISE to produce the Circle program, a collection of ESL and reading resources designed for Cree and Ojibwe speaking children. In addition to developing language education materials, she wrote about language policy, endangered languages, and adult education. Her research project with Dr. Marguerite MacKenzie, Knowledge and Human Resources for Innu Language Development, was awarded a SSHRC CURA grant of nearly one million dollars in 2004.

She was extraordinarily generous with her time and took a great deal of pride in her students’ work, keeping a copy of each thesis and dissertation she had supervised on her bookshelves for the remainder of her life. Barbara also took great pride in the 2013 publication of A Celebration of Qualitative Research: A Festschrift for Dr. Barbara Burnaby, prepared by her former OISE graduate students.

After her retirement in 2005, Barbara remained quite active, devoting a large portion of her time to her volunteer work, her art, and her gardening.

Barbara was a tireless advocate for literacy, particularly Indigenous language literacy. The Burnaby Aboriginal Literacy Blog, co-created with Arden Ogg, includes one of the most extensive bibliographies of articles and works on the topic. In her later years in St. John’s, Barbara was also instrumental in supporting and advocating for the Refugee Immigrant and Advisory Council (RIAC) and the Coalition on Richer Diversity (CORD), through donations, representing RIAC on various St. John’s committees, as well as writing grant and research proposals and letters of advocacy on RIAC’s behalf.

Outside of her work in education, Barbara was an accomplished artist and crafter, working in the media of painting, printmaking, and textiles, among others. Her fabric cyanotypes, often made from plants grown in her backyard, are instantly recognizable, as are the jackets, bags and quilts she made from the fabric.

Her painting and printwork in her later life was heavily influenced by her home; her work was equally capable of capturing Newfoundland’s severe and violent beauty and well as its stillness. She often showed her work at the Pollyanna Art Gallery on Duckworth Street. She also spent a great deal of time working in her spectacular show garden; visiting it was the highlight of many a potluck hosted in her Victorian home overlooking the Waterford River.

Barbara’s health declined rapidly in 2017, taking her friends somewhat by surprise. She was able to conceal her illness for quite some time, owing in part to her unwavering cheerfulness and generosity towards others, for which she will always be remembered.

Barbara is survived by her brother Sandy, his wife Helen, her nephew Nick and wife Amy. Memorial University’s flags will fly at half-mast on Saturday, February 10, from 1 – 4 p.m. to mark her passing.

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CILLDI Seeks New Director

Director, Canadian Indigenous Languages and Literacy Development Institute

Competition No.  – A110720557
Closing Date  – Jul 08, 2013

Applications are invited for the appointment of Director, Canadian Indigenous Languages and Literacy Development Institute (CILLDI), administered through the Department of Linguistics (Faculty of Arts) at the University of Alberta. CILLDI is an annual summer school committed to the revitalization of Canada’s Indigenous languages through language documentation techniques, linguistic training and second language teacher education. CILLDI was founded in 2000 and has offered nearly 80 courses and welcomed almost 400 individual students in its 12 years of operation. It is a tri-Faculty initiative at the University of Alberta, involving the Faculties of Arts, Education, and Native Studies. CILLDI’s purpose is to support individuals at the community level by providing basic training in linguistics, native languages, second language teaching methodologies, curriculum and resource development, and other aspects of professional enhancement such as language-related research and policy-making. An important aspect of CILLDI is the Community Linguist Certificate (CLC), offered through Linguistics and awarded by the Faculty of Arts. The CLC provides linguistic analysis and language documentation training to speakers of Canada’s Aboriginal languages who are interested in working towards the preservation of their languages.

The Director will have the opportunity to lead the development of a successful and evolving institute and help advance university-community relationships. Key activities will include consulting with Aboriginal communities across Western Canada and beyond, developing and implementing a strategic plan in consultation with the Deansworking with experienced and dedicated staff to advance CILLDI knowledge and practice, liaising with U of A and Faculty of Arts Senior Administrators, Directors and instructors and ensuring human and financial resources for sustaining CILLDI operations. Some teaching during CILLDI and in the Department of Linguistics and/or Native Studies during the regular term will be expected.

Ideal candidates must have extensive experience in working with Indigenous and endangered language communities, as well as a strong record of research and teaching, especially in the teaching of Aboriginal languages as second languages, applied linguistics and technologies supporting the documentation of Aboriginal languages. The successful candidate will have demonstrated success in an administrative capacity, as well as strong leadership and communication skills and the ability to work collaboratively with a wide range of community partners, faculty, staff and students. A PhD is required.

This full-time contract academic appointment will take effect in September, 2013 for a two-year term. Salary will be commensurate with experience and qualifications in accordance with the Contract Academic Staff: Teaching agreement (CAST).

To receive consideration, online letters of application (including a curriculum vitae and the names of three referees) and teaching dossier should be submitted by July 8, 2013.

How to Apply

Apply Online

Note: Online applications are accepted until midnight Mountain Standard Time of the closing date.

All qualified candidates are encouraged to apply; however, Canadians and permanent residents will be given priority.

The University of Alberta hires on the basis of merit. We are committed to the principle of equity in employment. We welcome diversity and encourage applications from all qualified women and men, including persons with disabilities, members of visible minorities, and Aboriginal persons.

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SILS 21 Final Program Draft Available — and response

Dear Friends of Indigenous Languages:

The final draft of the SILS 20 conference program is now available at . I am also happy to announce the date and location of SILS 21:

21st Stabilizing Indigenous Languages Symposium
January 16-19, 2014, Hilo, Hawaiʻi

SILS 21 will be hosted January 16-19, 2014 by the University of Hawaiʻi at Hilo in its newly completed Hawaiian language building. Hawaiʻi, and outer-island Hilo in particular, have one of the highest concentrations of young Native American language speakers anywhere. Yet, fifty years ago, no children spoke Hawaiian in Hilo. The change is the result of aligning school programming with an official language status. Visits to language immersion programs from preschool to the doctorate will be central to SILS 2014, as will be post-visitation discussion groups (Search: Oiwi TV No Anei Ko Kakou Ola). Challenges such as government testing, developing curricula, and parent involvement will receive special attention. Registration information will be forthcoming at .

Jon Reyhner, Ed.D.
SILS Steering Committee Coordinator &
Professor of Bilingual Multicultural Education
Northern Arizona University
Flagstaff, Arizona 86011


Hi Jon- Sorry I won’t be there for the SILS conference, the agenda looks great. Could you please forward this message to your list serve? ANA still needs more reviewers for our upcoming language competition-June 21-28. We are reviewing our panel reviewer applicant pool and will be inviting potential reviewers to participate, there is a mandatory training and paperwork to complete. As a reminder, the panel for ANA Language Grants will be the last week of June (June 21-28) and new reviewers will receive training prior to the panel. They will review 7 applications each, and be compensated. All reviews will be conducted remotely, with panels meeting via teleconference, so no travel will be involved. If you are not available or eligible to review for language, you can still consider reviewing for ANA’s other competitions. Please share with anyone that may be interested.
Michelle Sauve Senior Project Consultant Administration for Native Americans Administration for Children and Families
U.S. Department of Health and Human Services
901 D St., SW, Washington, DC 20447 (202) 260-6974

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Good News To Share Gai hon nya ni AKJR E learning

Screen Shot 2013-05-25 at 1.16.58 PM
Amos Key, Jr
Language Director

519-759-2650 ext 238

184 Mohawk St.
P.O. Box 1506
Brantford, ON N3T 5V6 

Woodland Cultural                                               Centre

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From Kelleen Toohey:

Dear colleagues,

Some bumf for our recently launched website. We would love it if some of your students, or their students would like to contribute.

All best, Kelly Toohey

Experience and utilize this exciting web site and iPad application for children aged 10 – 13. Students can create digital stories (text, illustrations and audio recordings) in two languages of their choice (English or French and other non-official language(s)). Teachers can use the website to help children learn language skills in a fun way.

Go to to find out how you can use this tool in your class.

Kelleen Toohey, Professor
Faculty of Education
Simon Fraser University Burnaby, BC V5A 1S6 CANADA
phone: 778 782 4517

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MAI Journal: A New Zealand Journal of Indigenous Scholarship

maijournal_0Kia ora,

The newest issue of MAI Journal: A New Zealand Journal of Indigenous Scholarship (Volume 2, 1) is now live! Please visit to check it out.

Noho ora mai,

Kimiora Brown | Publications and Journal Coordinator
MAI Journal: A New Zealand Journal of Indigenous Scholarship
DDI: +64 9 923 2376 | Fax: +64 9 373 7928
Email: | Website:
Ngā Pae o te Māramatanga: New Zealand’s Indigenous Research Centre for Excellence

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The Sequester Hits the Reservation

Hi All.

Bill Cook, linguist and supporter of Cherokee language things, sent me this to show how national level economic disasters come around to harm the Native Americans in the U.S.


On 21/03/2013 8:27 PM, William Cook wrote:> March 20, 2013
> The Sequester Hits the Reservation
> The Congressional Republicans who brought us the mindless budget cuts
> known as the sequester have shown remarkable indifference to
> life-sustaining government services, American jobs and other programs.
> So what do they make of the country’s commitments to American Indians,
> its longstanding obligations to tribal governments under the
> Constitution and treaties dating back centuries?
> Very little, it seems. The sequester will impose cuts of 5 percent
> across the Indian Health Service, the modestly financed agency within
> the United States Department of Health and Human Services that
> provides basic health care to two million American Indians and native
> Alaskans. It is underfinanced for its mission and cannot tolerate more
> deprivation.
> Here lies a little-noticed example of moral abdication. The biggest
> federal health and safety-net programs — Social Security, Medicaid,
> the Children’s Health Insurance Program, the Supplemental Nutrition
> Assistance Program, Supplemental Security Income, and veterans’
> compensation and health benefits — are all exempt from sequestration.
> But the Indian Health Service is not.
> The agency was supposed to be spared the worst of the automatic cuts;
> at least that is what its officials believed. Under a 1985 law that
> served as the model for the current sequester, annual cuts to
> appropriations for the Indian Health Service could not exceed 2
> percent.
> Even a cut of that amount is very bad news for the main health care
> provider for some of the poorest and sickest Americans, living in some
> of the most remote and medically underserved parts of the country.
> Like care for veterans, Indian health was supposed to be one area in
> which duty and compassion trumped cheapness.
> The agency’s officials were braced for that level of cuts, but they
> were mistaken. The Office of Management and Budget interpreted the
> sequestration law to mean that the 2 percent cap did not apply to most
> of the Indian Health Service financing.
> The agency’s director, Yvette Roubideaux, had to warn tribal leaders
> last September to plan for a much bigger, $220 million cut, which it
> expects will lead to 3,000 fewer inpatient admissions and 804,000
> fewer outpatient visits each year.
> The Indian Health Service operates 320 health centers, 45 hospitals,
> 115 health stations and 4 school health centers across the country.
> The vast majority of these are on reservations, where poverty,
> disease, substance abuse, suicide and other public health challenges
> are severe.
> The government has been increasing its support for the service in the
> last decade; at a hearing on Tuesday of the House Appropriations
> Subcommittee on Interior, Environment and Related Agencies, the
> chairman, Mike Simpson, an Idaho Republican, noted that between 2000
> and 2012, financing rose to $4.4 billion from $2.4 billion.
> This has allowed some improvement and stability in services. But Dr.
> Roubideaux told Mr. Simpson that the agency’s catastrophic health
> emergency fund, which reimburses providers for trauma care and major
> surgeries, would still run out of money before the end of the year.
> The federal government cannot use its budget nihilism to avoid its
moral and legal obligations.
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