In 1979, when a remote Diné (Navajo) community in New Mexico learned that under new federal self-determination guidelines it could establish its own school, it jumped at the opportunity. But just two years after the school's founding, conditions were so bad that teachers and community, in fear of a Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA) takeover, mounted a full-scale rebellion against the school's leadership. Now, some thirty-five years later, the author, who witnessed the events described, recalls in intimate and painful detail this story—a moment in Native American educational history, he suggests, not without meaning for other Indigenous communities' ongoing quest for greater educational sovereignty.

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