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Our Schools



The name Gaagagekiizhik Elementary School (Gaagagekiizhik GaKinoo’amaawadiiwi’gamig GaKinoo’amaawasowin) was determined at an Anishinaabe ceremony and symbolizes the sky, cedar, and learning lodge – all of which hold a sacred meaning in Anishinaabe culture.

The initiative started with a vision, and with time and dedication, Gaagagekiizhik School became a reality – opening its doors in 2015, becoming a historical event in efforts to preserve the Anishinaabe culture through learning.

Our goals at Bimose Community High School are:

  • Support the academic needs of all adults and at risk students in the Bimose Tribal Council member communities
  • Develop programming that helps enhance career opportunities
  • Develop programs that meet the cultural/traditional needs of our communities
  • Deliver educational programs that meet the specific learning styles of the learners in our communities
  • Support a learning model that is connected to personal growth


We offer a breakfast and lunch program here at Gaagagekiizhik. To start the day, students receive a cold breakfast upon arrival. They also receive a mid-morning snack before recess. Students then get a hot lunch.

Our Nutrition Program has a qualified cook on-site preparing new menus and meals daily. There is a strong focus on healthy, nutritious menu planning and preparation. The program also uses Anishinaabe food staples such as moose meat, wild rice and fish.

We accommodate all allergies and dietary restrictions that students may have.


Language learning is provided daily at our school. Through initiatives like our Phrase of the Week, in-class lessons and visits from our Traditional Knowledge Keepers, we infuse the Anishinaabemowin language so our students may gradually learn. 

The ease of learning the language and culture is different for each student.  Many of our students so not understand the language at first, and are gradually introduced at their own pace.  Language and culture are integral to our education program, where standard Ontario Curriculum and Anishinaabe teachings go hand in hand.


Some of the school activities that are provided are:

  • Monthly Anishinaabe Niimi’idiwinan and Anishinaabe Traditional Knowledge Keepers and Elder visits.
  • Pow Wows and Ceremonies
  • Seven Grandfather Teaching Award Assemblies (monthly)
  • Field Trips & Community Outings
  • Land Based Learning:  Bimose’s Gichi Mikinaak Lodge & KCA’s Youth & Family Wellness Camp (Land Based Activities and Equine Program)
  • Swimming Lessons
  • Anishinaabemodaa Bowl (Language Bowl)
  • Regalia making
  • Summer programming


Our alternative education program services youth from age 14-21. Funding options will be explored for each potential student. 

Students over 18 who have been out of school for a year or more qualify for the PLAR (Prior Learning and Recognition), which allows them to do assessments in five content areas (English, Math, Science, History, and Geography). When completed, it fills in all their grade 9 and 10 credits (up to 16 credits). PLAR gives students an opportunity to jump ahead in their education and be successful quickly


Co-operative Education – Students have the opportunity to work at either a paid placement or unpaid placement and earn credits towards their graduation.  This is a valuable program that allows students to gain work experience while also earning credits.

Extended Cultural Learning – We are continually working to arrange programs where students travel to First Nations communities for cultural learning. Elders teach cultural learning and the way of the Anishinaabeg. Students can potentially earn credits after completion of Elders’ teachings and the additional online work required.

Hands-on Learning – We are implementing various hands-on courses to engage the students in learning. We provide a safe and cultural learning environment where students take an active, hands-on role in their own education and the betterment of their communities.



We will report each month to the band on progress and attendance of each student. We try to be very accommodating of individual needs. We have independent study courses that allow students to work at their own pace and complete credits quicker with the aid of the teacher when necessary. Additionally, there are attendance incentives in place.

Literacy Test – We are registered with EQAO to offer the Ontario Secondary School Literacy Test (OSSLT) enabling students to complete this mandatory requirement for graduation with us. We also have a Literacy Course to help students complete this requirement. The Literacy Course fulfills the Literacy Test requirement and the student also earns a credit towards graduation.

Incentives for Credit Completion – We have incentives in place for every student who completes a credit. They will receive an incentive. If a student completes 8 credits throughout the year, they will receive 8 different incentives and credits.


Our goal is to help students complete their required course credits for graduation while helping them with cultural, social, and physical education. Each student has a personalized assessment based on his or her academic history to properly determine the fastest, most effective route to graduation. An Ontario Secondary School Diploma (OOSD) requires 18 compulsory credits, 12 elective credits, 40 community service hours and passing of the Ontario Secondary School Literacy Test (OSSLT). 


Do you follow the Ontario Curriculum?
Yes, all our teachers belong to the Ontario College of Teachers and are bound to the Ontario Ministry of Education’s Curriculum.  They also have Anishinaabe teachings that supplement our learning program.

Is Gaagagekiizhik School only for First Nation students?
No. Gaaagagekiizhik is open to anyone.

Do they need their Anishinaabe name/s to attend Gaagagekiizhik School?
No they don’t. We believe that decision is for the parents, ookomimaag or omishoomisimaang to decide.  If you have any questions about Anishinaabe names, we are happy to help.

My child doesn’t know the language. Will it be hard to attend Gaagagekiizhik School?
Not at all! The ease of learning the language and culture is different for each student.  Many of our students do not understand the language at first, and are gradually introduced at their own pace. Language and culture are integral to our education program, where standard Ontario Curriculum and Anishinaabe teachings go hand in hand.

When can I register my child?
You can register your child at anytime; just come see us at the school, give us a call or use our Online Registration Form