NEWS
02/06/2014 12:09 EST | Updated 04/08/2014 05:59 EDT

First Nations education deal to be announced Friday

Prime Minister Stephen Harper will make a major First Nations education funding announcement Friday in Alberta, CBC News has learned.

He is expected to address First Nations' demands for longer-term funding for education as well as the demand for real First Nation control over education.

Harper will be joined by Aboriginal Affairs Minister Bernard Valcourt as well as Assembly of First Nations National Chief Shawn Atleo and regional chiefs from across the country at Kainai High School on the Blood Tribe reserve north of Cardston, Alta.

Harper will have a banquet-style meal with the students after the announcement.

At its Special Chiefs' Assembly in December, the AFN passed a resolution that rejected the federal government's proposed First Nations education act, demanding long-term funding guarantees, First Nations control over education and a recognition of their languages and culture in curriculum.

But in an email to AFN regional chiefs this week, Atleo said that AFN had "received word" of the federal government's agreement to the conditions of that resolution, "including new and sustainable investments in the upcoming budget."

"This is a significant shift and I believe it results from our strong direction from chiefs to take all steps necessary to secure the future of First Nations children," Atleo said in the email.

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