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Bachelor of Education (BEd) – WAABAN Indigenous Teacher Education

In response to the Truth and Reconciliation Report, the Faculty in collaboration with the Toronto District School Board Indigenous Education Centre offers admission to a special cohort of students who will complete the Bachelor of Education (BEd) degree with a focus on Indigenous worldviews. Waaban Indigenous Teacher Education  will educate a new generation of teachers prepared to address the needs of First Nation, Métis and Inuit students, families and communities. Waaban will be grounded in Indigenous Knowledge and Pedagogy and will include teachings from Indigenous Elders, educators, and community leaders.

Program Highlights

Waaban is an Anishinabe (Ojibwa) word meaning it is tomorrow. It signifies commitment to a holistic program of teaching and learning that acknowledges the impacts of colonialism, and draws on the wisdom of ancestral teachings and contemporary leaders to put Indigenous futures into Indigenous hands. Waaban Indigenous Teacher Education will include attention to contemporary urban, rural and reserve perspectives and teachings from a diversity of nations. Students will be introduced to cultural and community resources and have opportunities to learn from and with Indigenous educators. Some features of the program are:


  • Held in Toronto for a special cohort of teachers who will take most classes together. Students will work with faculty members, guest speakers and others from the community to gain knowledge, insight and skills for teaching and learning in Ontario schools

Practicum Placements

Condensed schedule

  • Complete a full two-year degree in four consecutive semesters (16 months)
  • Classes will take place in a continuous schedule of terms  (Summer-Fall-Winter-Summer)
  • Click here for a full list of required courses


  • Students will take courses at the Kapapamahchakwew - Wandering Spirit School of Toronto - 16 Phin Avenue accessible by TTC (Donlands subway station).

Focused curriculum

  • Courses and experiences infused with a focus on Indigenous education.
  • Note: Special elective courses will be available to students in this cohort Graduates will be certified to teach in Ontario in one of the following teaching panels:
    • Primary-Junior (JK to Grade 6)
    • Junior-Intermediate (Grade 4 to Grade 10)

How to Apply


The next cohort is scheduled to begin in Spring 2021, the application will be available after October 15, 2020 for the May 2021 session.

Please note that admissions processes for the Waaban cohort will take place every other year.

Who can apply?

Individuals who match the following criteria may apply to the program:

  • Indigenous peoples - First Nation (Status or Non-Status), Métis or Inuit
  • Must have a secondary school graduation diploma and/or a university degree
  • See Ontario College of Teachers for details on teacher certification requirements
  • Non-Indigenous people (must have a demonstrated knowledge of Indigenous people's languages, histories, cultures, experiences, and perspectives)
  • Must have a university degree
  • Interested in becoming a qualified teacher in the province of Ontario in either the Primary-Junior or Junior-Intermediate divisions
  • A holder of a secondary school graduation diploma and/or a university degree
  • See Ontario College of Teachers for details on teacher certification requirements

Program Requirements

Because this program takes place in an active school building, students are required to have completed and to present an original copy of their current, cleared Criminal Record Check with Vulnerable Sector Screeningbefore the first day of class.

*With adherence to provincial legislation, all students must have a completed, cleared, original copy of their Criminal Record Check with Vulnerable Sector Screening before entering a school building. This document must be presented to the Board and/or school as required by each individual school board; this presentation may be in advance of the placement or on the first day.

How to Apply

For more information and specific details on How to Apply, please contact the Office of Student Services in the Faculty of Education at osp@edu.yorku.ca.  Applicants are also welcome to submit your email and/or phone and we will contact you directly. 

Once the application has been processed through the Office of Student Services, Faculty Education, applicants will be sent an email with NEXT STEPS.