Media Contact: Wilson (202) 343-3171
For Immediate Release: June 27, 1980

Interior under Secretary James A. Joseph said today that the Institute of American Indian Art will continue its operations at its campus in Santa Fe, New Mexico.

However, Joseph said that responsibility for the Institute will be transferred from the Bureau of Indian Affairs to the Office of the Assistant Secretary for Indian Affairs.

"This Institute is a unique and valuable cultural asset--not just to Native Americans but to all Americans,” said Joseph." It must not only survive; it must expand and grow. While there have been problems over the years--problems of management, guidance and attendant declining enrollment-- I believe these can be overcome and I have directed an intensive effort to that end." Meanwhile,

Joseph said, Grades 10, 11 and 12 from the Albuquerque Indian School will continue to use a portion of the Institute's campus until facilities at the Albuquerque school can be renovated and are again suitable for their use. The three grades were allowed to move to the Institute last fall because space was available there and some of the buildings in Albuquerque were considered unsafe for use. The joint use of the campus has caused considerable tension among the students, faculty and administrations of both schools. Founded as a high school level art school in 1962, the Institute now provides a two year post high school curriculum for. Indian students. The Albuquerque Indian School was founded as a Presbyterian sponsored school in 1881, taken over by the U.S. Government in 1886 and operated as an Indian boarding school for 90 years. It is-now managed by the All-Indian Pueblo Council under the provision of the Indian Self-Determination Act.

Joseph said he has directed the Assistant Secretary for Indian Affairs to develop interim plans for the two schools to share the facilities in Santa Fe while developing plans and schedules -for the rehabilitation of the Albuquerque campus. "At the same time I have asked the Assistant Secretary to develop plans for the efficient .management of the Institute with substantial input from the Native American Council of Regents working toward the goal of eventually establishing Native American administration of the facility."