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Native American Education

Native Education in Seattle Public Public Schools

In English and Coast Salish:

We would like to acknowledge that we are on the ancestral lands and traditional territories of the Puget Sound Salish People

SPS’s Native American Education Program is a Referral Service

We work with students, parents and guardians, teachers, principals, and SPS departments on a case-by-case basis to address the broad scope of needs our Native students face.

We want every family to understand how to navigate the district’s resources and support all schools in understanding the unique experience Native students face interacting with our system. Our goal is to ensure all Native students have a high-quality educational experience and reach the goal of graduation.

Please call or email Gail Morris gtmorris@seattleschools.org We are here to help, problem solve, and inspire.


Resources for Students and Families

Upcoming Events:


Seattle Parks and Recreation Summer Programs are Open
Register online or call your local community center
Registration Dates are April 19, May 10, and May 24

COVID-19 Rental Assistance

Please call ahead for Rental Assistance to see if the organization continues to have funds available.

Up-to-date information: 2-1-1 is an easy-to-remember phone number to connect with services that can help with rental assistance, shelter, legal referrals, housing assistance, transportation, food, and other needs.  

Red Eagle Soaring
King County area Native families who have been impacted by COVID-19 with a loss of income.

For Rental or Food Assistance, please email Nicole Suyama (Program Manager): nicole@redeaglesoaring.org

Homeless Prevention Offered at Mother Nation 
Provides case management and housing search assistance for Native Americans and their families.

  • Address: 4250 South Mead Street, Seattle 98118
  • Phone: 206-722-2321
  • Websitehttps://www.mothernation.org
  • Hours: Monday-Friday, 9:00 a.m-5:00 p.m. 

United Indians of all Tribes Homelessness Prevention Program
Serves families and young adults (under 24 years old) who are at imminent risk of eviction.

Chief Seattle Club Homeless Prevention
Call in advance to see if you qualify for assistance:
Tina Berkley, Homeless Prevention 206-473-7770.

UNEA Community Outreach/Rent Assistance
We are now able to provide limited assistance with rent to qualifying King County families. If you are interested, please email markseattl3@aol.com.

Due to funding limitations, our Community Outreach program is only able to serve Seattle families, with youth and/or Elders in the household.

Financial Assistance offered by St. Vincent de Paul of Seattle King County
Provides financial assistance for needs such as rent, bus passes, utility bills and other needs through local neighborhood chapters.

Rental Assistance offered by Salvation Army’s Social Services Department in White Center
Message states weekly availability.

Rental Assistance offered at United Churches Emergency Fund
Provides rent assistance to North Seattle residents in zip codes 98105, 98115, 98125 and 98103. Eviction notice not required. Move-in assistance may be available for people moving into or within the area served. 

  • Address: 4515 16th Avenue NE, Seattle 98105
  • Phone: 206-524-7885
  • Websitehttps://www.ucef-seattle.org/
  • Hours: Tuesday, Thursday, Friday, 10:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m. 

Project Self Sufficiency offered by YWCA Seattle King Snohomish The Willows
Provides case management and financial assistance for rent and utilities to those within Seattle city limits. Call to leave a message.**EVICTION NOTICE / SHUT-OFF REQUIRED**

Utility Bill Relief

If you would like support to pay a utility bill (water sewer garbage, Seattle City Light, or PSE) please contact Gail Morris, gtmorris@seattleschools.org, telephone 206-252-0948.

You will need these items: lease/rental agreement, current bill, and student must have a 506 Form on file with us and be Native American/Alaska Native.
Has your income changed? See if you qualify for the City of Seattle Utility Discount Program.

Remote Learning Resources

For information about SPS’s remote learning during COVID-19, updates and resources, please visit these webpages: 

Technology Support

Technology Supports for Families

Please call 206-252-0100 or email laptops@seattleschools.org for student and family technology support. Technology support includes:

  • Laptop and SPS device support
  • Internet WiFi hot spots support
  • Support with remote learning software (e.g., Seesaw, Schoology) and other educational resources
  • General technology resource information and support
  • Support with the following translation software:
    • Microsoft translator
    • Talking Points
    • Linguistica
  • Additional English Language instructional support

Learn more:

If your student needs help getting a laptop, please contact their principal, teacher or email Gail Morris: gtmorris@seattleschools.org.

Family Resources

Need support with food, housing, child care, Internet access and other services? Get help at the Crisis Connection.

Not quite sure what resources are available? Search the King County 2-1-1 Database. You can also dial 2-1-1 to speak with someone.

See if you qualify for free or low-cost Internet Resources for Seattle residents.

As part of a collaboration between the Western Washington Native American Education Consortium (WWNAEC) and Seattle Public Schools, we invite SPS Native American student(s) in grades 8 – 12 to apply to the Native American Youth Leadership Academy (NAYLA.).

This wonderful opportunity brings together over one hundred 8-12th grade Native American Youth from across Western Washington to take part in activities that support and promote positive academic outcomes, meaningful leadership development and cultural identity. Students will come together throughout the academic year, connect, build positive relations with other Native American students and adults, participate in a variety of culturally responsive leadership development, and engage in personal as well as academic activities that promote continual constructive progression.

The first cross-district NAYLA session for the 2021-2022 school year will be October 7, 2021.  

Transportation to and from each NAYLA session will be provided by SPS Native American Education Huchoosedah Program.

Applications are due by Wednesday, September 29 at 3:00 pm, and invited participants will be notified by October 1. All applicants must have a valid 506 form on file with SPS Native American Education to be considered.

Contact SPS NAYLA Coordinator and Native American Education Re-entry / Intervention Student Specialist Lauren Nabahe for more information: lmfonoimoana@seattleschools.org


SPS Educator Fighting for Students

Native Art Featured on SPS Websites

Meet the Native Artist Whose Work is Featured on the SPS Public Websites

The story behind the artwork on our websites: Andrea Wilbur Sigo, Squaxin Island

Educator and Program Awards and Recognitions

Boo Balkan Foster Named Regional Teacher of the Year 2022

Boo Balkan Foster

Washington State Regional Teacher of the year 2022.

We are thrilled to announce that the Puget Sound Educational Service District (PSESD) has recognized Boo Balkan Foster of Seattle Public Schools as the Regional Teacher of the Year!

Boo Balkan Foster is a šəqačib teacher in the Native Education Department. She teaches a leadership class, working in partnership with Chief Sealth International High School and Denny International Middle School, serving students in grades 6-12. She is a veteran educator with 26 years of experience as a teacher.

Boo Balkan Foster Honored by Enduring Spirit Award, Native Action Network

Boo Balkan Foster poses for a photo holding an award

Congratulations to Boo Balkan Foster who received the 2021 Enduring Spirit Award!

Presented by the Native Action Network, award recipients are honored for their lifetime commitment to building strong, healthy Native communities and intergenerational connection.

Leaders like Boo have advocated powerfully for environmental protections, access to quality education, holistic health and wellness, cultural preservation, traditional knowledge, tribal sovereignty, strengthening of treaty rights, tribal economic development, and beyond.