The unique historical relationship between Tribal Nations and the United States government is a special federal-Indian relationship. This federal-Indian relationship was shaped by the United States Constitution as treaties, and as living documents, the United States Constitution and treaties between tribal Nations is the foundation for the special federal “fiduciary” responsibility for the education of Native learners.
Under various pieces of federal legislation, the United States Congress has stipulated that its responsibility is to ensure educational programs for all American Indian students and adults meet specific criteria. These programs should (a) focus on high-quality, internationally competitive content and performance standards and (b) reinforce the Indian culture and the Indian community.
The Office of Indian Education in Washington directly offers a number of programs. These programs may be offered to schools through Formula Grants, Demonstration Grants and Professional Development Grants.