Char-Koosta News

The Official Publication of the Flathead Nation online

May 13, 2010

CSKT and Tribal Education celebrate the 2010 TED honorees

Susie Antiste shares her Kootenai Cultural Preservation award with her husband Tom. Antiste's award created by Melissa Michel featured a Tule reed tepee and huckleberries. (Rob McDonald photo)
Susie Antiste shares her Kootenai Cultural Preservation award with her husband Tom. Antiste's award created by Melissa Michel featured a Tule reed tepee and huckleberries. (Rob McDonald photo)

RONAN The 2010 honorees of the Tribal Education Awards banquet drew a crowd of about 250 people to Kicking Horse Job Corps on April 29. It is a special night for youth of all ages because it is the Tribes' time to recognize the success of their students, parents, and tribal leaders, and to acknowledge the teachers who make a difference in the public school systems.

Salish Pend d'Oreille Cultural Preservation award was received by Sophie Haynes of Arlee. (Rob McDonald photo)
Salish Pend d'Oreille Cultural Preservation award was received by Sophie Haynes of Arlee. (Rob McDonald photo)

Kicking Horse students and staff prepared a banquet reception for the evening complimented with an Honor Song performed by Jeff Weaselhead. Weaselhead ended the evening's festivities with the traditional song, "Home Sweet Home."

The nomination process begins in early each spring and final selections are given to the CSKT Tribal Education office in prior to the awards banquet.

Josie Caye, Cherry Valley Elementary, receives her award for Student of the Year. (Rob McDonald photo)
Josie Caye, Cherry Valley Elementary, receives her award for Student of the Year. (Rob McDonald photo)

Each of the reservation-based schools nominates students, parents, and educators that make a difference in their schools.

They look for that special parent that goes the extra mile for their child. They look for the student that influences others in the class and make a difference in the school; they are the students that are friendly, hard working, and excel academically. They and are known in their communities as the ones that can be counted on, the leaders of tomorrow.

Tara Matt looks a bit relieved as she receives the St. Ignatius School District Parent of the Year award. (Rob McDonald photo)
Tara Matt looks a bit relieved as she receives the St. Ignatius School District Parent of the Year award. (Rob McDonald photo)

The nominations are reviewed and selected by the Indian Education Committees who select a winner for each category. The high school student of the year category requires students to write an essay and to submit a letter of recommendation from a teacher, community member, or tribal representative. A committee reviews the "anonymous" documents and a winner is selected.

Two awardees were recognized for their achievement in the cultural preservation through their teachings to the children of all ages. They are seen as beacons of hope to keep alive the stories, history, and traditions of the people of the Salish, Kootenai and Pend d'Oreille Tribes respectively. Both awardees were present for the evening's events. Sophie Haynes, of Arlee was chosen by the Salish, Pend d'Oreille Culture Committee and Susie Antiste, of Elmo was chosen on behalf of the Kootenai people as this year's Cultural Preservation Honorees.

Alexis Billedeaux, Ronan, daughter of Molly Billedeaux and Leonard Burke, was K. Wm. Harvey Elementary's Student of the Year. (Rob McDonald photo)
Alexis Billedeaux, Ronan, daughter of Molly Billedeaux and Leonard Burke, was K. Wm. Harvey Elementary's Student of the Year. (Rob McDonald photo)

Lastly, the Lifetime Achievement was awarded to Arlee educator, Wilhemina "Willy" (Matt) Wright who was recognized with the highest amount of respect in the community from her peers and her students. She has contributed to the academic, community, and cultural lives of many of people throughout her lifetime. Her success in her career is remarkable and is a proven inspiration to the tribe as a whole said tribal education officials.

The following are the awarded students, parents, and educators who made a positive imprint in their respective communities.

Parent of the Year from Ronan and the Polson School Staff of the Year was awarded to Molly Billedeaux. (Rob McDonald photo)
Parent of the Year from Ronan and the Polson School Staff of the Year was awarded to Molly Billedeaux. (Rob McDonald photo)

Polson School District
Cherry Valley Elementary Student of the Year: Josie Caye
Linderman Elementary Student of the Year: Amy Plante
Middle School Student of the Year: Stephanie McDonald
Staff of the Year: Molly Billedeaux

Two Eagle River School
Middle School Student of the Year: Isaiah LaMere
Parent of the Year: Darlene Billie
Staff of the Year: Sean Dalbey

Arlee School District
Elementary Student of the Year: Naomi Plant
Middle School Student of the Year: Sydney Haworth
ParentS of the Year: Pascal and Andrea Adams
Staff of the Year: Sylvia McDonald

Wilhemina "Willy" Wright who has contributed to the academic, community, and cultural lives of many of people throughout her lifetime earned her the Lifetime Achievement Award. (Rob McDonald photo)
Wilhemina "Willy" Wright who has contributed to the academic, community, and cultural lives of many of people throughout her lifetime earned her the Lifetime Achievement Award. (Rob McDonald photo)

CSKT 2010 High School Student of the Year
Adessa Durglo - St. Ignatius High School

St. Ignatius School District
Elementary Student of the Year: Selena McCrea
Middle School Student of the Year: Whisper Mahseelah
Parent of the Year: Tara Matt
Staff of the Year: Joyce Easter

Ronan School District
KWH Elementary Student of the Year: Alexis Billedeaux
Pablo Elementary Student of the Year: Anton Atwin
Middle School Student of the Year: Sophia Woodcock
Parents of the Year: Molly Billedeaux and Leonard Burke
Staff of the Year: Peggy Rowe

Adessa Durglo, St. Ignatius High School, sports her Pendleton jacket she received from the Tribes as the 2010 CSKT Student of the Year. (Rob McDonald photo)
Adessa Durglo, St. Ignatius High School, sports her Pendleton jacket she received from the Tribes as the 2010 CSKT Student of the Year. (Rob McDonald photo)

2010 High School Student Honorable Mention
Louis Mayuk Caye: Polson School
Jerod Tanner: Ronan School
Selah Carpentier: Two Eagle River School

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