NAYA Many Nations Academy Celebration Student Showcase


Ours is a vulnerable community, and in times of crisis Native Americans are often impacted disproportionately. Natives experience the highest rates of homelessness, poverty, and unemployment of all ethnic groups throughout the region. Native youth constitute 24% of all children in foster care in Multnomah County, and 51% of Native high school students graduate on time.
Native youth are also over-represented in behavioral issues that lead to suspensions or expulsions and are often singled-out for cultural differences that are not respected in a mainstream curriculum. Education and work force readiness can change this narrative, elevating not just our youth, but their families and communities as well.


The Native American Youth and Family Center (NAYA) founded its Many Nations Academy (MNA) in 2007, in response to the low graduation rates of Portland’s Native youth. Operating in partnership with Portland Public Schools, the MNA offers a culturally appropriate and student-centered learning environment that approaches its rigorous high-school curriculum through Native ways of knowing.

The MNA offers a positive educational experience that integrates core Native American values and emphasizes academic excellence through student empowerment. With an eye toward college and career readiness, MNA students have access to NAYA’s College and Career services, incorporating post-high school preparation and ensuring that students have the skills, tools and support they need to succeed through college and beyond. Our project-based learning, small class sizes, and focus on relational learning honors the unique talents each student brings into our learning community.