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ON Education Department awards JOM Parent Committees

Pawhuska JOM parent committee receives Exemplary JOM Program for 2021-2022 school year

The Osage Nation Education Department recognized the Johnson O’Malley Parent Committees for their service to the Native American students in their school districts for the 2021-2022 school year.

JOM parent committees are volunteer and each committee is allotted a certain amount of funding each year based on the amount of Native American students that qualify within their districts. The committees then provide monetary reimbursements for families with students in extracurricular activities, school supplies, support for graduating seniors, cultural activities and more.

According to a Feb. 15 post on the ONED’s Facebook page, the awards were given to the active JOM parent committees of the 2021-2022 school year.

“There was an incredible amount of JOM activity during that time period. It was definitely exciting for the students!” said Avis Ballard, JOM Program Coordinator for the Nation. “The committees are separated into two sections for these awards, according to the amount of students in each program. The first group of awards is for the committees who work with school districts with 1 – 149 students. The second group includes the committees who work with school districts with 150 or more students.”

Ballard said she took two years off from giving out the awards due to the pandemic. Schools were under so many restrictions during that time the parent committees couldn’t do many activities with the students.

“However, the parent committees made a strong comeback in my opinion,” she said. “Great job to everyone who won an award! Their work does not go unnoticed.”

The following awards were given to committees with 150 or more students:

Exemplary JOM Program, Pawhuska JOM

  • Annual award honors commitment and outstanding efforts of a parent committee

Outstanding JOM Event, Skiatook JOM Powwow

  • Annual award honors a successful and innovative JOM event

General Spirit Award, Hominy JOM

  • Award celebrates committee efforts and school spirit

Most Traditional JOM Committee, Woodland JOM

  • Award comments committee efforts to maintain long-standing traditions

Inspirational JOM Committee, Barnsdall JOM

  • Award recognizes committee efforts to improve program and deliver services
The Skiatook JOM Parent Committee at their youth powwow on March 26, 2022. From left, Valarie Burris, Jhara Blalock, Melyssa Hight, and Chairperson Brooklyn Kemble. Courtesy Photo

Among the activities the Pawhuska JOM parent committee held were a dance for their senior class, an Indigenous American Day for the entire school district, a banquet and guest speakers that included Cherokee/Kiowa Oklahoma City Thunder NBA player, Lindy Waters III. Waters took photos with students and their families, as well as signed autographs.

“I feel incredibly blessed to serve my hometown community as the Pawhuska JOM Committee Chairperson,” said Lauren Redeagle. “It’s a great privilege to work with so many invested individuals for the betterment of our young people.”

The following awards were given to committees with 149 students or less:

Exemplary JOM Program, Wynona JOM

  • Annual award honors commitment and outstanding efforts of a parent committee

Supportive JOM Parent Award, Kristen Duncan, Anderson JOM

  • Award celebrates parent’s contribution to JOM student success
Woodland JOM Princess, Elizabith Lockett, dances during an event held in her honor on Jan. 12, 2023. Courtesy Photo

According to the Bureau of Indian Education, the Johnson-O’Malley Program is authorized by the Johnson-O’Malley Act of 1934 and the implementing regulations are provided in Part 273 of Title 25 of the Code of Federal Regulations. As amended, this Act authorizes contracts for the education of eligible Indian students enrolled in public schools and previously private schools. This local program is operated under an educational plan, approved by the Bureau of Indian Education, which contains educational objectives to address the needs of the eligible American Indian and Alaska Native students.

Johnson O’Malley programs offered to American Indian and Alaska Native students vary and may include such programs as culture, language, academics and dropout prevention.  

Author

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Shannon Shaw Duty
Shannon Shaw Dutyhttps://osagenews.org

Title: Editor

Email: sshaw@osagenation-nsn.gov

Twitter: @dutyshaw

Topic Expertise: Columnist, Culture, Community

Languages spoken: English, Osage (intermediate), Spanish (beginner)

Shannon Shaw Duty, Osage from the Grayhorse District, is the editor of the award-winning Osage News, the official independent media of the Osage Nation. She is a graduate of the University of Oklahoma with a bachelor’s degree in Journalism and a master’s degree in Legal Studies with an emphasis in Indigenous Peoples Law. She currently sits on the Freedom of Information Committee for the Society of Professional Journalists. She has served as a board member for LION Publishers, as Vice President for the Pawhuska Public Schools Board of Education, on the Board of Directors for the Native American Journalists Association (now Indigenous Journalists Association) and served as a board member and Chairwoman for the Pawhuska Johnson O’Malley Parent Committee. She is a Chips Quinn Scholar, a former instructor for the Freedom Forum’s Native American Journalism Career Conference and the Freedom Forum’s American Indian Journalism Institute. She is a former reporter for The Santa Fe New Mexican. She is a 2012 recipient of the Native American 40 Under 40 from the National Center for American Indian Enterprise Development. In 2014 she helped lead the Osage News to receive NAJA's Elias Boudinot Free Press Award. The Osage News won Best Newspaper from the SPJ-Oklahoma Chapter in their division 2018-2022. Her award-winning work has been published in Indian Country Today, The Washington Post, the Center for Public Integrity, NPR, the Associated Press, Tulsa World and others. She currently resides in Pawhuska, Okla., with her husband and together they share six children, two dogs and two cats.
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