C̣aƞṡayapi Waḳaƞyeża Owayawa Oṭi
(Lower Sioux Children are Sacred School)
C̣aƞṡayapi Waḳaƞyeża Owayawa Oṭi – Lower Sioux Early Head Start and Head Start was created to meet a need for increased cultural connections and wrap-around services to target families with a need for resources and early child care.
In conducting community surveys and focus groups over the past year, the number one call from the community is for increased cultural connections. Over 75% of families with young children expressed strong interest in a free, culturally-based high-quality early education program.
Once we received federal and state grant dollars to plan, hire staff, create policy, obtain training, and conduct renovation, we thankfully opened doors on August 1, 2018. We have now finished our first year of operation and are in our second year serving 83 children and families with 60 in the center, 11 home-based, and 12 expectant families. We are looking to build with and for the community for this school to raise the next generation of Dakota language speakers to thus strengthen our community’s sovereignty and overall well-being.
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"Dakota Iapi kiƞhaƞ sdodkiyapi kte." When they speak the Dakota language, then they will know who they are.
C̣aƞṡayapi (where they paint the trees red), also known legally as the Lower Sioux Indian Community in the State of Minnesota is a federally-recognized Dakota tribe.