Dianna Rai, a teacher at Alvin A. McKay Elementary School in the Nisga’a village of Laxgalts’ap in the Nass valley, has been awarded the Prime Minister’s Award for Teaching Excellence.
As a Nisga’a language teacher, Rai helps students develop oral fluency using sign language, movement and pictures.
The Prime Minister’s Award for Teaching Excellence Certificate of Achievement honours regional recipients for their commitment and achievements in preparing students for a digital and innovation based economy, and carries a cash prize of $1,000.
According to the Nisga’a Lisims Government, the Nisga’a language is spoken by roughly 350 people in the Nass valley. Rai is also active outside the classroom, organizing and cooking for feasts, dancing at events and helping make traditional medicines. She volunteers with the Elders’ Council and the Language Authority.
The Prime Minister’s Awards were announced on Oct. 5, on the Innovation, Science and Economic Development Canada YouTube channel.