Education: Cultural Hegemony and Critical Consciousness The Lac du Flambeau Curriculum

Social Class & Socio-Economic Status

Social class is defined as a division of a society based on wealth, income, education and social status. 

The Native community is disproportionately low-income and poor relative to the general American population. Many families living on the reservation are near or below the poverty line.

At Lac du Flambeau, the median household income is $20,451. The poverty rate is at 46%.

The Tribe offers economic support though the department administers state, and federal assistance programs for individuals and families that meet income eligibility requirements.

For instance, the Tribe provides assistance for heating costs, electric costs, and energy crisis situations so whether you use wood, propane, natural gas, electricity, or fuel oil to heat your home, energy assistance is available if you qualify.

Lac du Flambeau employs approximately 800 people through the casino, hotel, lodge, campground, gas station, museum, and Simpson electric.

Poverty is related to drug and alcohol addiction, and the Native community is no exception.

Half of the Lac du Flambeau reservation is owned by White People, and the public school is run by the Wisconsin public school system.

Yet 98% of the Lac du Flambeau public school population is Native American.

Given this cultural hegemony, some community members interviewed for the research project said that they feel that they have no say in what happens in the community.

Native students who get a post-secondary education are seen by some as rejecting their community. (compare Ogbu’s and Fordham’s research suggesting that some people in the Black community think that students who do well in school are “acting white”).