History of Our School
The Navajo Mountain Boarding School was started in the early 1930’s with a hand full of Navajo students living in a Hogan and wearing Navajo traditional outfit. By 1934 the Bureau of Indian School and the Civil conservation Corp began construction of the natural stonewall hogans with pine logs that were harvested from the vase of the mountain. The logs were hauled down with wagons and a team of horses, which were used for roofing of the structures covered with packed mud. The octagons were used for classrooms, kitchen and dining room, teacher and staff quarters for over thirty years. Also, separate bathrooms were established for boys and girls. Later on, a power plant house, student quarter and coalhouse were added to the campus. The small school served kindergarten to second grade with about thirty (30) students. Many successful students came through this landmark educational institution; doctor, prosecutor, tribal leaders, nurses and future educators.
By the early 1960’s the old school began to experience an increase in student population even though this school was a feeder school to Tuba City Boarding School and border town schools like Flagstaff and Richfield. But, with the new concept and understanding that students need immediate parental support to enhance their educational pursuit with the idea to better serve the student, when they are closer to their home base. In this perspective, a groundbreaking ceremony was performed in 1964 for a new modern school at the east base of Little Begay Mountain with majority of local residents coming to witness the occasion.
The key purpose was to increase parent participation in school settings on behalf their children and also to create employment for local practitioners. Presently, the NaaTsis’Aan Community School is recognized as a Grant School by the Division of Dine Education of the Navajo Nation with four Board of Directors elected by the Navajo Mountain Chapter community. The NaaTsis’Aan Community School has on average of one hundred ten to one hundred thirty students; some are in residential program setting and others are bused in on daily basis. Not only does the school serve the local students, but also reaches out to surrounding Navajo Chapter Communities to service Navajo students. Next to NaaTsis’Aan Community School is Navajo Mountain High School operated by San Juan School District in the State of Utah. Many of the students advance to Navajo Mountain High School after they complete their eighth grade education at the community school. Currently, the community school serves students from kindergarten to eighth grade, whom continue their education at other schools that provides high school level services.