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Mi'kmaw Kina'matnewey

Director of Mi'kmaw Language and Culture

Administration – Membertou, Nova Scotia
Department Administration
Employment Type Full-Time
Minimum Experience Experienced

Job Description


Director of Mi’kmaw Language and Culture


Division: Language and Culture

Location: Membertou, Sydney, Nova Scotia

Language: High level of fluency in Mi’kmaw (Oral, Reading, Writing) and English


Reports to: Executive Director


Revised: October 2018


Please note:   Mi’kmaw Kina’matnewey is involved in a strategic planning exercise and organizational review which may result in some changes in job responsibilities.  The overall accountabilities for this position will remain intact, but the position may change and evolve as the organization develops to deliver on objectives of the Board of Directors.


Client Service Results:


Lead Language and Culture Services to deliver on the objectives established by the Board of Directors of Mi’kmaw Kina’matnewey.  The Director will ensure that traditional Mi’kmaw values are reflected in all programming aimed at increasing the number of, and proficiency of Mi’kmaw language speakers, particularly in elementary and secondary schools, but also secondary school programs, engaging with education Directors, Principals and community educators.  Operate proactively in an environment sensitive to external influences (residential schools, colonization of Indigenous peoples, aging population of speakers) and involve and engage Elders and Knowledge Holders in initiatives to create and sustain Mi’kmaw language and cultural resources. Participate as part of the senior management team to contribute to strategic objectives supporting oral proficiency.


  • Lead the management of Language and Cultural programming and services to ensure delivery of organization goals.

  • Provide leadership in the development of strategies and tools to assess students’ language and cultural learning.

  • Contribute to the overall success of Mi’kmaw students in achieving oral proficiency.

  • Develop and implement immersion settings for language learning (for example, camps, traditional on-the-land activities).

  • Identify gaps in resources and services and assist in the development of solutions.

  • Research and secure funding for language and cultural initiatives and programming.

  • Establish replicable practices for maximizing effectiveness of language and cultural programming.

  • Collaborate with Mi’kmaw Student Support and Academic Support Services to ensure alignment of activities to maximize effectiveness.

  • Develop work plans involving all employees within Language and Culture and manage performance.

  • Stay up-to-date on effective instructional strategies and resources, and support materials and training for teachers.  

  • Where possible, support member community programs promoting the Mi’kmaw language in communities for adult learners.

  • Consider and determine alternative programming that supports Mi’kmaw language and cultural promotion and revitalization, that may require innovative ideas and solutions.  Seek funding sources to launch new program initiatives.


The incumbent will provide effective management of the following portfolios (under review):

  • Mi’kmaw language and culture initiatives

  • Treaty Education;

  • Language programming for early childhood;

  • Community relations.


Summary of Duties:


Provide expertise and guidance to the Nova Scotia Mi’kmaw communities to support the continued development and implementation of strategies that support the the integration of language and cultural programming across the curriculum.  Provide leadership in the development of strategies and tools to assess students’ language and cultural learning. Ensure programming reflects the needs of all Mi’kmaw students, including those students attending provincial schools.  Liaise with other Directors to ensure alignment of services and reduce duplication.  Manage employees within Language and Culture to maximize results.


Leads the work planning function of the department


  • Facilitates the enhancement of Language and Culture education within member communities;

  • Provide advice, support and direction for the continued development, implementation and assessment of pre-school, elementary, and secondary programs.

  • Work with community educators and Mi’kmaw Elders to collaborate on programming objectives;

  • Work with other Directors on the development of policies, procedures and guidelines.



  • Ensures that Executive Director and Board are up to date regarding successes and challenges through regular reporting;

  • Communicate the interests and challenges of the organization to local, provincial and national organizations and other committees as mandated in the strategic plan for Mi’kmaw Kina’matnewey;

  • Support the data gathering systems at central and First Nation levels.

  • Provide analysis and recommendations to the Executive Director and Board regarding program development and delivery.

  • Maintain regular communications with the communities.


Manage employees within Language and Culture

  • Develop and manage work plans that are driven by the strategic objectives;

  • Manage employees including hiring, coaching, performance management, capacity building, discipline up to and including termination;

  • Initiate, coordinate and enforce systems, policies and procedures;

  • Consult with Human Resources on staffing matters.


Facilitates the achievement of strategic objectives

  • In collaboration with the Executive Director ensures processes are in place such that the organization implements its strategic plan

  • Analyses issues that might hinder the achievement of strategic objectives

  • Makes recommendations to assist in the achievement of strategic objectives

  • Prepare and facilitate presentations;

  • Liaise with external governmental stakeholders to access funding.



  • High level of fluency in Mi’kmaw (Oral, Reading and Writing) and English

  • Masters degree in Education or equivalent;

  • Teacher license.  Candidates without a teaching license but with significant experience in curriculum development and language/culture issues may be considered.

  • Relevant experience in education administration/leadership and people management

  • Experience in language classrooms or an environment helping people acquire language

  • Demonstrated commitment to language and culture revitalization required

  • Demonstrated success in achieving First Nations educational objectives


  • An equivalent combination of education and extensive experience may be considered.



  • Ability to model the best of communication in Mi’kmaw (speaking, writing and reading)

  • Ability to devise methods to ensure all students have access to Mi’kmaw language and culture

  • Ability to be successful in working with Mi’kmaw First Nations communities

  • Ability to coach professionals and model the best of Mi’kmaw values

  • Ability to develop plans, set goals, objectives and priorities for employees

  • Ability to write reports, correspondence, proposals and procedure manuals

  • Ability to work effectively with groups of staff, band officials and the general public

  • Ability to understand, promote and engage technology and education

  • Ability to understand and deliver change in the delivery of educational programming

  • Ability to interact with senior professionals in other organizations

  • Ability to coach professionals to establish new systems



  • Indigenous way of knowing/being (Elders, Knowledge Holders, etc.)

  • Mi’kmaw Education Act

  • Mi’kmaw culture and traditions

  • Provincial curriculum

  • Understanding of Band operated schools

  • Data analysis and techniques

  • First Nations communities

  • Government relations/organizations

  • Strategic planning


Personal Suitability:

  • Organized with the ability to deliver on objectives

  • Work effectively in a team environment

  • Flexible and reliable

  • Willingness to travel extensively

  • Collaborative

  • Leadership – to lead with moral courage

  • Knowledge of change management, particularly in education


The Director must be willing and able to travel throughout Nova Scotia and occasionally to other locations.

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    Membertou, Nova Scotia
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