The Networks

Deepening learning through inquiry, innovation and teamwork.

The Networks of Inquiry and Indigenous Education (NOIIE) is a voluntary network of inquiry based schools and school districts in British Columbia and beyond.

Using an inquiry-oriented, evidence-based approach to learning and teaching through the Spiral of Inquiry, the Networks are dedicated to:

  • Every learner crossing the stage with dignity, purpose and options.
  • Every learner leaving our settings more curious than when they arrived.
  • All learners gaining an understanding of and respect for Indigenous ways of knowing.
  • Through our collective efforts eliminating racism in schools.

Schools participate on an annual basis by engaging in the Spiral of Inquiry and at the end of the year, submitting case studies to share their learning. The Networks share resources, case studies and reflections in a spirit of generosity, curiosity and growth. Network schools are also supported by educational leaders throughout British Columbia, the Yukon, Australia and other locations internationally as they work towards improving outcomes for all learners.


The NOII (Networks of Inquiry and Innovation), established in 2000 and initially funded by the BC Ministry of Education, was designed to improve the quality and equity of education in BC through inquiry, teamwork across roles, schools and districts, as well as a focus on applying coaching forms of assessment to assist learners to take greater ownership of their learning. In 2010, the Aboriginal Enhancement Schools Network (AESN) was established to specifically address improving outcomes for Aboriginal learners. AESN schools focused their inquiries specifically around Indigenous education, such as addressing goals associated with their school district Aboriginal Enhancement agreements, integrating Indigenous worldviews and ways of knowing into schools and classrooms, or engaging in land and place-based learning.

In 2018, the Networks adopted a new name to cohesively tie all of the work together – the Networks of Inquiry and Indigenous Education (NOIIE).

The Networks image – Floating Stones – is used with the permission from New Zealand photography, Martin Hill.

NOIIE Winner of the 2019 Cmolik Prize

We are thrilled to announce that the 2019 $100,000 Cmolik Prize for the Enhancement of Public Education in B.C. has been awarded to Debbie Leighton-Stephens, Judy Halbert and Linda Kaser for their innovative Networks of Inquiry and Indigenous Education (NOIIE). The inquiry-oriented, evidence-based approach to learning and teaching has improved education in British Columbia. Thank you to the Cmolik Foundation and Simon Fraser University for this honour and support to further the work of the Networks.

Read more about the 2019 Cmolik prize here.