In 2010, Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development Canada (AANDC) carried out a formal evaluation of the Elementary/Secondary Education (ESE) Program. Four research contracts were awarded to handle specific lines of research. The evaluation looked at relevancy, performance, and efficiency and economy. It found that a consistent gap between on and off reserve educational opportunities and success does exist, and that improvements are necessary.
Eight recommendations were developed in conjunction with an action plan. The recommendations include, but are not limited to: develop a strategic and transparent framework to allocate funds to enhance student success; conduct research on funding allocation methodologies, equitable to provincial approaches and accounting for cost-realities on reserve; ensure that future policy clearly defines roles and responsibilities within the ESE program; work with First Nations to improve culture and language retention; work with First Nations to improve accessibility for students with special needs; and explore the possibility of the incorporation of early childhood education and adult programming into AANDC ESE programming.