Ho-Chunk Nation donates to the Montessori American Indian Childcare Center in St. Paul

By Ardith Van Riper

On Thursday, October 18, 20108, the Ho-Chunk Nation donated $10,000 to the Montessori American Indian Childcare Center (MAICC) in Saint Paul, Minnesota.  Director LaVon Lee and Primary Guide Janice LaFloe accepted the donation from District 5 Legislature Representatives Matthew Mullen, Kathyleen LoneTree-Whiterabbit, and Forrest Whiterabbit. 
According to MAICC’s website, “the mission of the MAICC is to address the early childhood needs and the academic achievement gap of American Indian children through revitalizing the language and culture” (Americanindianmontessori.net, 22 Oct. 2018).  The MAICC was established in 2014, and their staff dedicates themselves to creating a culturally rewarding program for their students.
This donation relieves transportation issues and helps ensure some the Ho-Chunk Nation’s youngest enrolled members get to and from the MAICC.  Ho-Chunk Nation tribal member Laura White Eagle (Kidd) says, “I chose to request assistance from the Ho-Chunk Nation for the American Indian Montessori for many different reasons.  My grandsons current attend (2 years), and soon my granddaughter will be attending. 
“I believe in the Montessori way of teaching, and its Indian owned and operated.  The women who founded this Montessori are upstanding in our Native community and well trusted.
“The school has been in need of a new bus, as theirs is having many problems and falling into disrepair.  My grandchildren not only enjoy their little bus to and from school, but it’s the only way possible for them to attend, like many other children.  I thank the Ho-Chunk Nation for the thoughtful and generous contribution.”