Senate Bill 13

Current status of Senate Bill 13: Tribal History/Shared History

After countless years, much collaboration, and hard work, Senate Bill 13: Tribal History/Shared History was unanimously passed in 2017. As a result of this law, Oregon Department of Education (ODE), in partnership with the nine federally recognized Tribes in Oregon, has developed a curriculum that centers Native American experience and perspectives in Oregon that is historically accurate, culturally relevant, community-based, and developmentally appropriate. Tribal History/Shared History includes not only Oregon tribal history, but also the sovereignty issues, culture, treaty rights, governance, socioeconomic realities and events faced by tribal communities and nations in Oregon today.

While the goal is to have a complete K-12 curriculum, Tribal History/Shared History now offer 45 lessons in grades 4, 8, and 10 starting in January 2020. The curriculum is now available to school districts and professional development is being offered to teachers and administrators across the state. These lessons are aligned with academic content standards in English/Language Arts, Math, Science, Social Studies and Health, and focus upon essential understandings, rich cultures, and countless contributions of Native peoples in Oregon. School districts are beginning to partner with their educational service districts (ESDs) and local tribes to create the conditions that support teachers to implement the new content.

The Tribal History/Shared History curriculum reorients curricula for students and educators alike and fosters Indigenous analyses about: 1) the importance of Place, 2) the realities of Indigenous presence 3) multiple and varied Indigenous perspectives, and 4) political nationhood and sovereignty.* These analyses counter inaccuracies and erasures; challenge power dynamics; and encourage partnerships with tribal communities in order to shape a healthier future for all Oregonians. In addition to available lessons, Oregon educators will also be provided nine essential understandings for learning about tribal nations. These understandings have been drafted and are now going through the approval process with the 9 tribal councils. These essential understandings conceptualize what is universal in the vast diversity of Native American experiences in order to provide educators a solid foundation with which to teach the truth of tribal peoples. Stay tuned…
*Guiding principles and critical orientations are integrated from Leilani Sabzalian, PhD, Assistant Professor in Indigenous Studies and the Sapsik’ʷałá Program at the University of Oregon

If you’re interested in more information or support, ask district leaders what they’re doing to provide professional development, reach out to April Campbell, advisor of Indian Education, at ODE, or contact a local Tribal Education Director.
Visit the Oregon Department of Education website for more information regarding lessons, professional development and feedback opportunities