The Statement of Prime Purpose, the founding document of the Métis Nation of Ontario, identifies “to encourage academic and skills development and to enable citizens of the Métis Nation to attain their educational aspirations” as a key objective. In pursuit of this goal, the Métis Nation of Ontario (MNOTI) was established in 1996 with funding from the Métis Human Resource Development Agreement (MHRDA). For the next ten years, the Branch built an excellent infrastructure through which it delivered employment and training initiatives to qualified Métis candidates. That success, widely recognized at both the provincial and federal level, attracted additional program funding. As a result, the Branch became more and more engaged in Education oriented initiatives, and its responsibilities in the program delivery area continued to grow. In recognition of its evolving role in education in the province, the name of the Branch changed to Métis Nation of Ontario Education and Training (MNOET). The Branch now provides a full range of employment training programs and supports for the educational success of all Métis across Ontario beginning in early childhood, continuing through K to 12 to post-secondary education and into adulthood. In 2010, the MHRDA program was phased out and replaced with the Aboriginal Skills and Employment Training Strategy (ASETS). MNOET was successful in applying for funding under the new program and will be receiving 30.6 million dollars over a five year period.
With one in every four Métis in Ontario under the age of 14, MNOET is poised to play an even more significant role in the development and delivery of education and training programs in the future. The MNO and its many partners, including the province, recognize the potential for this growing population of young Métis to play a key role in creating a healthier, more prosperous Ontario. This potential will only be realized if young Métis can access to the best skills training and education available.
The value of the support for the Branch from ASETS goes beyond education and training. Because it also provides monetary support for cultural programs, the Branch has helped to build a real sense of pride in Métis citizens. Armed with the enhanced self-confidence and strong self-esteem these programs fostered, young Métis citizens have uncovered and embraced the will and determination to live a successful life.