Ihduwiyayapi: Advancing Indigenous
Early Childhood Education


About The Program

The Ihduwiyayapi: Advancing Indigenous Early Childhood Education program partners with tribal colleges and universities (TCUs) to build the capacity of their early childhood education programs and improve teacher education through family and community outreach, enhanced child developmental pedagogy, pathways development, enhanced capacity, and engagement in national conversations about ECE best practices and lessons learned.

The program piloted in 2021 through $600,000 and $350,000 grants from the W.K. Kellogg Foundation and Heising-Simons Foundation, respectively. The Bezos Family Foundation has since committed a $5.3 million grant over four years of a broader $11.3 million program plan.

Ihduwiyayapi can be translated from Dakota to “they are getting ready.” Its meaning conveys that those involved in the programming are preparing themselves and their programs for what will come next, they are preparing a foundation for the advancement of Indigenous Early Childhood Education.

Indigenous Early Childhood Education Blogs

Articles and success from the College Fund programs team.


Thank you to our Grantees for supporting this program.

2021-2022 Pilot Cohort

Blackfeet Community College

Fond du Lac Tribal and Community College

Little Priest Tribal College

Northwest Indian College

Southwestern Indian Polytechnic Institute

Stone Child College

2022-2023 Cohort


College of Menominee Nation

Diné College

Diné College

Lac Courte Oreilles Ojibwe College

Lac Courte Oreilles Ojibwe University

Fond du Lac Tribal and Community College

Little Priest Tribal College


Navajo Technical University

Stone Child College

Sitting Bull College