Keres Children’s Learning Center was founded with the purpose of reclaiming the education of our Pueblo children and educating them in a manner that maximizes their development and potential as Pueblo people. In Keres-speaking villages from the north central Rio Grande to the western Keres-speaking communities, tribal leaders and elders remind parents and families of the crucial importance of passing on their language, and in essence, passing on history, values, beliefs, and a worldview like none other.
In 2006, KCLC’s co-founders, Trisha Moquino and Olivia Coriz, felt that they had done what their grandparents, families, and elders had preached to them all their lives to do. They had continuously worked for and supported their respective language maintenance and revitalization programs and promoted them through constant dialogues with family, teachers, tribal leaders, and elders. They each have a daughter whom they were rearing to be fluent Keres speakers. Yet they found themselves working together in a school system that caused them to ask themselves, as educators, if they would continue to perpetuate a cycle of assimilation and education that does not address the needs of the whole Pueblo child, or would they work to create a different kind of educational setting that is consistent with their own Pueblo expectations and values, a setting in which they felt comfortable placing their own daughters. KCLC is the answer to Moquino’s and Coriz’s soul searching.
Moquino and Coriz set out to ask a group of very thoughtful, wise, and committed people to be on their board. The tireless efforts of the co-founders, board members, tribal leaders, and many, many supporters have resulted in Keres Children’s Learning Center, for children ages 3-6, whose goal is to educate the whole Pueblo child using the Keres language as the medium of instruction.
Keres Children’s Learning Center (KCLC) strives to reclaim our children’s education and honor our heritage by using a comprehensive cultural and academic curriculum to assist families in nurturing Keres-speaking, holistically healthy, community minded, and academically strong students.