Tribal Governance Training Series

Tribal Governance Training Series

KIVA provides the following courses designed to educate, inform and advise leaders of tribal governments, tribal organizations and boards of directors to help them understand the magnitude of their overarching roles and responsibilities; and suggest ways they can improve their governance. Courses include, but are not limited to:

  • Tribal Council – Board Roles & Responsibilities
  • Tribally-Controlled Schools Boards of Directors
  • Tribal Enterprise Board Roles & Responsibilities
  • Robert’s Rules of Order: Mastering the Basics
  • Evolution of Federal Indian Law & Policy
  • Strategic Planning in Indian Country

Tribal Council-Board Roles & Responsibilities (3 Days)

Serving on tribal councils or boards of directors require that members have a thorough understanding of the mission of the organization, their roles and responsibilities; and the laws that pertain to the tribe and organization. Members must have a good working knowledge of the tribal constitution, tribal ordinances, and basics of tribal governance. Members of boards of directors must have a good working knowledge of the organization’s charter and bylaws; and the rules of their funding agencies. Some tribes and organizations require that members receive an orientation on their roles & responsibilities as a requirement before taking office. Council and board members are constantly faced with legal and fiscal challenges. Council and board members must have a good understanding of the legislative processes. They must have a full understanding of the doctrines of tribal sovereignty; and how to protect the tribe’s sovereignty.

Course participants will receive hands-on training on constitutional principles, tribal governance, trust doctrines, federal appropriations laws, and laws that pertain to tribal nations and tribal organizations. Participants will learn how to separate politics from business, the doctrine of segregation of duties, development of policy, the legal implications of their decisions. They will learn the fundamentals of finance and accounting. This training will arm the participants with hands-on training that they can apply when they return to their home organizations.

Who Should Attend?

Members of tribal councils, members of tribal boards of directors (health boards, education boards, school boards, public safety boards, tribal enterprise boards, board members of non-profit organizations); and tribal council secretaries or board secretaries.

What Will I Learn?

  • Your role as an officer and member of the tribal council or board of directors
  • Federal Indian law and constitutional principles
  • Overview of the Indian Reorganization Act (IRA)
  • Importance of separation of powers, Rule of Law, Tribal Sovereignty
  • Importance of separating politics from business
  • How tribal codes and ordinances, council resolutions, policies work
  • How Articles of Incorporation & By-Laws work
  • Legal implications of your actions as council and board members
  • Importance of tribal management systems and the Importance of financial reports, audits and audit findings, audit resolutions
  • Overview of how the federal government works
  • Federal appropriations law and process (how federal budgets affect your organization) and how you can have input
  • Developing and monitoring operating budgets
  • Importance of strategic planning
  • Importance of having a code of ethics
  • Lessons on leadership and basic supervision

Apply for 3 Day Course @ $780 Only

Tribally-Controlled Schools Grant School Boards (3 Days)

Tribal school boards have overarching responsibilities and obligations to their tribes, parents, and students; and funding agencies (BIE). These responsibilities span across many legal and functional areas of their organizations. Tribal leadership and stakeholders expect a certain level of professional and ethical conduct; and compliance with the Rule of Law, and to achieve their educational goals. Understanding Congressional intent of programs authorized and funded by the federal government, and understanding the governing federal statutes and regulations is paramount to understanding the authorities (and limitations) inherent to programs operated by tribal governments and boards of directors. This course will identify applicable federal statutes, regulations, and federal requirements; and will trigger full dialogue and discussion of various federal laws and regulations that govern programs, the expectations, and requirements that pertain programs operated by the tribe and boards of directors. Not to forget that tribal nations and boards of directors may, from time to time, enact tribal laws, codes, and policies that may also govern the programs. This course will, perhaps, trigger discussions for evaluating and improving tribal education goals, performance measurement strategies.

Who Should Attend?

Indian School Boards, tribal council members, parent advisory groups, school administrators, Bureau of Indian Education line officers and administrators, tribal attorneys, tribal consultants.

What Will I Learn?

It is critical that tribal councils and Indian Education Boards of Directors have a good working knowledge of federal and other statutes and regulations, including:

  • Indian Education Act of 1972
  • Pub. L. 93-638, Indian Self-Determination & Education Assistance Act of 1975
  • Pub. L. 95-561, Education Amendments Act of 1978
  • Pub. L. 101-630, Indian Child Protection & Family Violence Act of 1990
  • Pub. L. 101-647, Crime Control Act of 1990
  • Pub. L. 100-297, Indian Education Act of 1988
  • Indian School Equalization Program (ISEP) Grants
  • Tribally Controlled Schools Act of 1988
  • No Child Left Behind Act of 2001
  • Special Education Integrated Membership Process
  • Data Collection and Management
  • Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA); Free and Appropriate Public Education (FAPE) for children with disabilities.
  • BIA Division of Facilities Management Programs
  • Emergency Planning – “Safe Schools Plan”
  • GAO Recommendations (GAO-13-774 – Indian Affairs)
  • BIE Strategic Direction Plan: 2018-2023
  • Tribal Oversight Responsibilities
  • School Board Responsibilities in Reference to Federal Laws
  • BIE Standards, Assessments, Accountability System
  • Federal contract/grant requirements: reporting, accountability, accounting for funds, complying with annual audits; and legal requirements

Apply for 3 Day Course @ $780 Only

Tribal Enterprise Boards Roles & Responsibilities (3 Days)

Native American communities are beset with growing difficulties. Many cannot be resolved by continuing to do what they have been doing and using the tools they have been using. Traditional leaders and responsible officials want to see their communities prosper. They want to see traditional values be present in the lives of future generations. To succeed they must ensure that they are seeing the issues clearly and understanding all options realistically available.

Historically tribes have waited for federal funding to launch economic and community development projects. Funding has never been enough to maintain steady progress across Indian Country. As a result, Indian communities have fallen further and further behind. Natural population growth and higher expectations exceed increases in revenue from all sources. A key to closing the widening gap in applying the fundamental finance tool of leverage. It can be profitably applied to projects which: (a) can be demonstrated to be feasible and (b) produce a new generation of earning assets.

Who Should Attend?

Tribal elected officials, senior administrators, tribal economic development boards, grant writers, planners, community board members, non-profit organizations, budget, and finance committee members and tribal consultants should take advantage of this opportunity.

What Will I Learn?

Attendees will learn to focus on the real threats to community life represented by deepening poverty and the out-migration of the community’s best and brightest seeking a different future. This seminar is a practical problem-solving experience including how to select projects, recognize applicable financial resources and structuring the projects to make the best use of limited capital. Making these judgments requires learning some new concepts and practicing how to apply them. Attendees will learn the concepts and practice their application through the use of actual issues and opportunities from their community’s life today.

  • Why does natural population growth affect our community opportunities?
  • What is the impact of a growing gap between the population and the community’s asset base?
  • How do we construct an investment screen that optimizes our project selection?
  • What is capital leverage?
  • How do we identify assets that our community might leverage?
  • What is “deal structuring” and how do projects gain access to different forms of capital as they mature?
  • How do we take advantage of the changing value of a project “in the process?”
  • What will capital markets expect from us?
  • How do we satisfy capital markets without putting our assets at undue risk?
  • What is “risk management” and what are the options for us?

Apply for 3 Day Course @ $780 Only

Robert’s Rules of Order: Mastering the Basics (2 Days)

Conducting and managing effective and productive tribal council and board meetings is an artform but can be challenging. It takes skill to conduct and manage meetings, oftentimes in an emotionally charged environment. It takes skill to manage a wide diversity of interests while respecting the right of council members, board members, and the public to have input. An effective chairman, speaker, board chairman, or presiding officer must have good parliamentary skills, time management skills to control how meetings are conducted. Without control and keeping the discussion focused on the issues “on the floor” a meeting could easily get out of control and result in an unproductive meeting.

Council and board members and other officers must also have a good working knowledge of the meeting rules (Robert’s Rules of Order), the tribal constitution and other tribal laws, legislative protocols. Each must know their roles and responsibilities. A knowledgeable tribal council or board member contributes greatly to effective and productive meetings. Without knowledgeable council and board members, meetings can easily lose focus and lead to lengthy meetings; or in a worst-case, can get out of control. Council and board members that are knowledgeable of parliamentary procedures know-how and when to use the rules effectively.

This course will teach council members and board members the basics of Robert’s Rules of Order. It will provide the knowledge of the meeting rights of council members and board members; and how they can fully and correctly exercise parliamentary rules and their meeting rights. It will teach them rules pertaining to a question of a quorum, impacts of voting and not voting, procedural questions, debate rules, simple majority and two-thirds majority, adjournment or recess. Participants will be assigned topics and scenarios they will address during team exercises. This course is highly recommended for all tribal council members and boards of directors and is best when conducted on-site or for a particular tribe or board, or during tribal council or board retreats.

Who Should Attend?

Members of tribal councils, members of tribal boards of directors (health boards, education boards, school boards, public safety boards, tribal enterprise boards, board members of non-profit organizations); and tribal council secretaries or board secretaries; and tribal attorneys.

What Will I Learn?

  • How to prepare for effective meetings
  • Fundamentals of parliamentary procedures (Robert’s Rules of Order)
  • How to effectively preside (chair) over meetings and prevent side conversations, keeping members on the topic, ensuring participation so all voices are heard, and keeping the debate focused on the topic
  • How to manage conflicts and avoid chaos
  • How to use the seven fundamental motions used in most meetings (main motion, amendments, amend the amendments, refer to committee, postpone to a definite time, lay on the table, the previous question/call the question)
  • How to follow legislative procedures and protocols
  • Setting and following the meeting agenda
  • How and when to use committees or subcommittees to resolve conflicts and disagreements
  • When and how to use executive meetings to discuss sensitive and confidential matters
  • When to call for a caucus to regroup

Apply for 2 Day Course @ $680 Only

Evolution of Federal Indian law &Policy (2 Days)

Federal Indian policy establishes the relationship between the United States Government and the Indian tribal nations within its borders. The United States Constitution gives the federal government primary responsibility for dealing with tribes. Laws and federal government’s public policy related to Native Americans have evolved continuously since the founding of the United States. Some argue that the failure of the treaty system was because of the inability of an individualistic, democratic society to recognize group rights or the value of an organic, corporatist culture represented by the tribes. Decisions of the United States Supreme Court, and the Marshall Trilogy, during and ensuring the formation of the United States government had serious impacts on the status of tribes, limiting tribal sovereignty of tribes, defining the government-to-government relationships, federal trust responsibility while defining (and limiting) tribal rights including property, water rights, jurisdiction, hunting, fishing, religion; commerce and taxation; and actions involving tribal membership.

The United States’ romance with the West and its historic development have been chronicled in many books and films; and the central theme is often the relationship between white settlers, Indians and Indian tribes. This part of the romance is much more than pure nostalgia. It involves a wide variety of emotions that white culture had toward Indians, each of which has been more, or less prevalent at different times in our nation’s history. Studies were commissioned, like the Merriam Report on “The Problem of Indian Administration” commissioned by the Brookings Institute; and the American Indian Policy Review Commission identified the problems associated with the treatment of sovereign tribal nations. These studies and reports shaped the reform of American Indian policy through new legislation such as the Indian Reorganization Act of 1934; and the Indian Self-Determination & Education Assistance of 1975. The reports strongly influenced succeeding policies in land allotment, education, and health care. The reports found generally that the federal government was failing at its goals of protecting tribal nations, their lands, and their resources both personal and cultural.

Who Should Attend?

It behooves elected tribal council members, tribal boards, tribal leaders, tribal professionals such as the tribal judiciary to gain a solid foundation of various federal laws and policies that affect their tribal nations. Tribal attorneys, Indian boards of education, teachers, tribal consultants; federal service providers are encouraged to attend.

What Will I Learn?

KIVA Institute brings experts who have years of experience in Indian Country to help you understand the federal laws that are intended to protect tribal cultural heritage, historic properties, and natural resources. Learn directly from experts who have years of technical expertise in conducting archaeological surveys, conducting technical assessments, developing mitigation measures, and helping federal and state agencies understand their responsibilities to tribes:

  • The Evolution of Federal Indian Law and Policy (U.S. Supreme Court decisions)
  • U.S. Supreme Court Cases (affecting citizenship, civil rights, Congressional authority, gaming, hunting and fishing rights, jurisdiction, reservations, statutory and treaty interpretation, taxation, liquor and drugs, tribal sovereignty)
  • Federal Tribal Recognition through Treaties and Executive Orders
  • Congressional Authority
  • Relationships with state governments (court cases
  • Property rights including water and mineral rights
  • Tribal Sovereignty
  • Federal Executive Orders relating to Indian tribal nations, tribal members
  • Federal Legislative History (Indian Reorganization Act; Dawes Act; Indian Removal Act, American Indian Trust Fund Management, Native American Graves Protection & Repatriation Act, Indian Claims Settlement Act, etc.)
  • United States Constitution; and the Doctrine of Separation of Powers

Apply for 2 Day Course @ $680 Only

Strategic Planning in Indian Country (2 Days)

Organizations conduct planning to provide clear and strategic direction; to articulate current and future needs and to match the commitment of resources with the strategic direction of the organization.  Strategic Planning helps an organization develop and define its Vision and Mission Statements – and helps define how to accomplish them.  It is a process by which organizations assess their current situation and capabilities.  Funding agencies look to a tribal organization’s Strategic Plan when considering funding proposals. Some tribal governments use Strategic Plans as a guide in developing annual budgets. There are a variety of modern perspectives, models and approaches in Strategic Planning but the way a plan is developed depends on the organization’s leadership, the culture of the organization, the complexity, size and the environment of the organization.  KIVA’s “Strategic Planning in Indian Country” focuses on capturing the traditional values and beliefs of the tribal organization. This feature in tribal Strategic Planning is very different from planning for non-tribal organizations. This involves a look back to the traditional knowledge, teachings, and values; and relies heavily on the wisdom and teachings of the elders, oral history and traditional knowledge. Knowing the traditional history and values helps define the tribe’s foundation; and the ensuing Mission Statement and Vision Statement; goals, strategies; and helps define future plans.

Who Should Attend?

This course is designed for tribal elected officials, tribal organizations, chartered organizations, non-profit organizations, boards, tribal administrators, tribal planners, program managers, finance and accounting staff, and tribal employees.

What Will I Learn?

  • How to shape your Strategic Plan planning goals, objectives; and involve your Strategic Partners
  • How to engage tribal members with traditional knowledge who will help shape the traditional foundation for your planning initiatives
  • How to identify and develop culturally-relevant Cultural Values Statements
  • How to define a culturally-relevant Mission Statement and Vision Statement
  • How to identify and define your priorities (short term and long term)
  • How to conduct a SWOT Analysis (Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, Threats)
  • How to identify problem areas using a Cause and Effect Diagram (Fishbone Diagram)
  • How to identify proposed solutions to identified problem areas
  • How to develop goal statements, statements of objectives; and action plans
  • The art of facilitation
  • How to implement the Strategic Plan so the plans is not a great looking document that sits on your bookcase awaiting to be implemented
  • At the end of the course, you will walk away with the knowledge of the Strategic Planning process so you can start and complete your own Strategic Planning initiative

Once you attend this session, you should be able to apply the planning techniques for your organization’s Strategic Planning initiatives.

Apply for 2 Day Course @ $680 Only

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