4 Vision for the Workshops We want LEAs that support the growth of productive and respectful relationships between First Nations and school districts in order to create school environments where First Nations children can thrive with improved achievement rates.Photo: Seventh Generation Club Member Amanda Cartlidge, Gr. 4
5 What We Hope to Accomplish Provide you with LEA support, ideas and strategiesShare new draft LEA Toolkit and listen to your feedback on how to improve itOffer you an opportunity to ask questions and share your experiences
6 Important NotesThe information we are sharing, including the Sample LEA, is not legal advice.First Nations are always encouraged to seek independent legal advice to address their particular circumstances and concerns.FNESC does not negotiate LEAs, but strives to provide support to First Nations around LEAs through workshops, resources and responding to information requests.
7 Your Input and the Feedback Workbook We welcome your ideas for improving the LEA Toolkit. You are informing the next version (Spring 2013) and online versions.Besides the Toolkit and workshops, we want to know what other types of supports are needed.What do we need to advocate for or share information about relating to LEAs?Fill out your Feedback Workbook, and you might win a $50 Prize!!!!
8 Looking at the Draft Agenda Are there changes?What topics are of most interest?Are there topics we need to add?Local priorities?
9 Background to FNESC’s LEA Work Established in 1992, the First Nations Education Steering Committee (FNESC) is now directed by a 100-member board of First Nations community representatives and supported by First Nations leadership.LEA work is an important part of FNESC’s efforts to achieve quality First Nations education.
10 Background to FNESC’s LEA Work FNESC established an LEA Sub-Committee in 2007 and published an LEA HandbookFNESC issued a Revised LEA Handbook in 2009LEA workshops held in spring 2011 and 2012 to develop LEA ToolkitRecommendations to and dialogue with the BC Education Partners
11 AcknowledgementsLEA Toolkit was drafted under the direction of the FNESC LEA Sub-Committee.It was informed by feedback from a series of LEA community workshops and by participants in FNESC’s annual Regional Sessions community meetings on education.In recent years, this work has been financially supported by the federal Education Partnerships Program.We’ve appreciated past expressions of support from the BC School Trustees Association.
13 What makes an LEA effective? What’s in Section 1?What Are LEAs?Why are they important?What makes an LEA effective?
14 What is an LEA?An LEA is an agreement between one or more First Nations and a provincial School Board or an independent or private school. It is a mechanism to influence how a SD provides education services to First Nations.It outlines terms for the purchase of education programs and services by the First Nations for K-12 status Indian students ordinarily resident on-reserve and attending provincial schools off-reserve.Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development Canada (AANDC) requires that an LEA be in place before AANDC will flow tuition funding through a First Nation, instead of directly to the Province.
15 Why are LEAs important? LEAs are more than just tuition agreements: LEAs can help First Nations have a stronger voice in the education of their children.They can be an effective tool for better student outcomes, particularly for better student achievement.LEAs can influence how school districts provide services for First Nations students, and for promoting meaningful First Nations and parental involvement in the public school system.
16 See the characteristics of “Effective LEAs” on page 2 Quick TipSee the characteristics of “Effective LEAs” on page 2Discussion and Feedback – What can we improve in Section 1?
17 Differences between LEAs & EAs See page 9 of the Toolkit
18 2 Looking at the Toolkit… LEAs within the context of other provincial improvement initiatives and accountability mechanisms
20 Introduction to Section 2 LEAs can be understood and considered in the context of other provincial government initiatives and commitments, described in this section.
21 2.1 Aboriginal Education Enhancement Agreements (EA) An EA is a formal arrangement between a school district, all local Aboriginal communities and the Ministry of Education (MEd)An EA is intended to enhance the education achievement of Aboriginal studentsTargets are embedded in Achievement ContractsEAs are meant to promote collaboration and shared decision-making.
22 2.1 Aboriginal Education Enhancement Agreements (continued)EAs can be used to stress the important role of traditional languages and cultures in promoting student development and student success.Fundamental to EAs is the requirement that school districts provide strong cultural programs, appropriate to the local first peoples on whose traditional territories the districts are located.
23 Looking at the questions… Are EAs required by the Ministry? (p. 6)Who develops and implements EAs? (p. 7)Who determines if EAs are making a difference to educational outcomes for Aboriginal Students? (p. 7)Is funding available to support EAs? (p. 8)
24 Elements of the BC Ministry of Education Accountability Framework The Framework is rooted in the School ActKey elements:Achievement Contracts and Superintendents Report on AchievementSchool PlansSchool Planning CouncilsSuperintendents of AchievementThe School Act (section 79.2) requires every school district to have an achievement contract (public commitments by the Board of Education to improve success for each student in the district) and must identify how the achievement contract aligns with other improvements initiatives such as EAs. Achievement Contracts are three-year plans that are updated annually and form the basis for the Superintendent’s annual Report on Achievement to the Board of Education.The Ministry’s District Achievement Contract Guidelines set out requirements and guidance on the development of Achievement Contracts.
25 Ministry Policy says that targets for Aboriginal achievement must be included in Achievement ContractsFNESC has recommended to the K-12 Aboriginal Education Partners that targets for Aboriginal achievement be embedded in individual district achievement contracts and that these be reported to the Minister annually.
26 “What’s missing from the Ministry’s Accountability Framework?” LEAs are missing! We want greater attention to the potential of LEAs to promote accountability and student achievement
27 2.3 Other Ministry Accountability Mechanisms Compliance AuditsSpecial AdvisorsBC’s Education Plan“How Are We Doing?” Report (HAWD)Seventh Generation Club member, Serena Grade 6 Muheim Elementary
28 2.4 Other Provincial Accountability Mechanisms Representative for Children and YouthOther agenciesDiscussion and Feedback – What can we improve in Section 2?
29 Comparing Accountability Requirements to AANDC First Nations School Requirements:School assessmentsSchool certificationReporting on school performance to parents annually8 reporting variablesPublic School Requirements:No district reviewsNo school accreditationAANDC pays $105.9 million to public, private and independent schools annually.
30 Contextual Factors for LEAs 3Looking at the Toolkit…Contextual Factors for LEAs
31 What’s in Section 3? Common Principles Legal Commitments Constitutional ObligationsPolitical CommitmentsInternational Commitments
32 Introduction to Section 3 First Nations have continually expressed a number of common principles that will ideally inform the development and implementation of LEAs.These principles have been articulated in several major reports of recent years.Seventh Generation Club member Rebecca, John Field Elem.
33 3. 1 Common Principles:First Nations learners must have an education that…Instills confidence in their self-identity, families, communities, traditional values, language and culturesGives them skills to thrive in contemporary society, including technology skillsPrepares them to access any opportunities they choose for higher learning, employment and life choices
34 3.2 Legal CommitmentsIn BC, First Nations have been working toward First Nations control of First Nations education for decades.They have made significant progress in establishing the foundation for a strong BC First Nations education system.This system includes agreements with the Canada and BC, and the ongoing development of programs and systems.
35 3.2 Legal CommitmentsThe BC First Nations Education Jurisdiction Agreement was signed July 2006 by Canada, BC and FNESC (supported by federal and provincial legislation).Section 1.9 commitment: “to continue to work with School Boards and First Nations to assist with the development of Local Education Agreements.”
36 3.2 Legal CommitmentsThe Tripartite Education Framework Agreement was signed January 27, 2012 by Canada, BC and FNESC.TEFA commits the federal and provincial governments to consult with FNESC on proposed changes to education legislation, policy or standards that may materially affect First Nations.S. 4.3 of TEFA: “BC and FNESC agree to continue to work collaboratively to improve educational outcomes for First Nations students.”
37 3.3 Constitutional Obligations Section 35(1), Constitution Act, 1982:“The existing aboriginal and treaty rights of Aboriginal peoples of Canada are hereby recognized and affirmed.”This unique relationship gives rise to certain obligations of the crown: including fiduciary duties and obligations to consult and accommodate Aboriginal peoples.
38 3.4 Political Commitments Statement of Apology on Residential Schools System (2008)New Relationship (2005)Transformative Change Accord (2005)The Auditor General’s Reports on AANDC’s education Program, and AANDC’s ResponseEach of these is described in the Toolkit.
39 3.5 International Commitments United Nations Declaration on the Rights of the Child (1959)United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child (1989)United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (2007)Each of these is described in the Toolkit.Discussion and Feedback – What can we improve in Section 3?
40 Funding Considerations 4Looking at the Toolkit…Funding Considerations
41 What’s in Section 4? Policies and Processes for… AANDC Funding Ministry FundingSchool District FundingFirst Nations Funding AgreementsPolicies and Processes for…
42 4.1 AANDC Funding Policies and Processes Elementary/Secondary EducationAANDC’s stated objective is that children living on reserve receive a comparable education to other children in the province, and achieve similar education outcomes.To support this objective, AANDC provides tuition for on-reserve students included on the Nominal Roll who attend K-12 provincial schools.At issue is the notion of “comparable education” and this is under discussion at policy tables.
43 Questions What is the Nominal Roll? Who is eligible to be on the Nominal Roll?Who is eligible to receive funding from AANDC?
44 More Questions (continued) What funding is available from AANDC for eligible students attending provincial public or independent/private schools?Tuition (Instructional Services) FundingStudent Support ServicesComprehensive Instructional Support ServicesAncillary ServicesStudent Transportation (a percentage)Student Allowance (Financial Assistance)Guidance and CounsellingAccommodation ServicesEach item above is described in the Toolkit.
45 “Where can I find updated AANDC programs/guidelines details?” Visit AANDC’s Education Programs webpage to see the current National Program Guidelines. See instructions on page 37
46 AANDC Funding for Students Attending Provincial Public Schools When a First Nation has an LEA with the school district, AANDC provides tuition funding directly to the First Nation administering authority.First Nations that are block funded have tuition built into their block funding (i.e. multi-year Aboriginal Recipient Funding Arrangements)
47 Students attending Independent or Private Schools There are four classification groups of independent schools.First Nations administering authorities with more than 10 students (FTEs) attending an independent/private school are required by AANDC to have an LEA before AANDC will flow the funding to the First Nation administering authority.If a First Nation has fewer than 10 students attending independent/private schools, AANDC does not require an LEA, but it strongly recommends them.
48 Authorized uses for Tuition Funding AANDC requires that tuition funding only be used to pay for education services.All funding must be paid to the school and unexpended funds must be returned.Tuition funds cannot be used to cover the costs of LEA negotiation or LEA administration.
49 “Can funding follow the student if they leave school after Sept. 30?” Some LEAs include provision for funds associated with early school leavers to be credited to the First Nation(s) for the provision of alternative education opportunities for those students. See Section 13.4 and 13.8 of the Sample LEA.
50 Can the First Nation hold-back tuition as leverage? Education funding is considered by Canada to be a “Set Contribution.” meaning that unexpended funds must be reimbursed to Canada. There is a risk that funds withheld beyond the end of the fiscal year will be recovered by AANDC.
51 4.2 BC Ministry of Education K-12 Funding Policies and Processes Funding is provided to Boards of Education based on the Ministry’s Operating Grants Manual (OGM).Become familiar with the OGM. Check for annual updates.See the table: Allocation of Operating Grants (page 44), which provides an overview of the funding allocation methodology.
52 “Are First Nations being overcharged?” See the suggested wording in the Sample LEA (found in the last tab of the Toolkit). Section 12.2: “The First Nation will not be responsible for paying any amounts that it does not receive funding for from AANDC…”Use this formula:Student FTE (nominal roll, FTE status code 1) x First Nations Billing Rate (provided by Province)
53 First Nations Billing Rate (p. 45) The Ministry annually sets First Nation Billing Rate, formally known as the “Per Pupil Block Rates.” They represent the average cost of an FTE student attending school in a school district.It takes into account the District Funding Allocation, a share of costs for the Provincial Learning Network, Pay Equity, BCeSIS and the Annual Facility Grant.Other provincial funding may be available to First Nations, such as CommunityLINK funding. These are not included in the First Nations Billing Rate.
54 Targeted Aboriginal Education Funding Ministry policy says that Targeted Aboriginal Education Funding requires the collaboration of Boards of Education and local Aboriginal communities to develop and deliver Aboriginal programs and services that integrate academic achievement and Aboriginal culture and/or language.1701 instructions are an appendix in the Toolkit.Funded Aboriginal education programs must be additional to any other programs/services to which an Aboriginal student is eligible - it must not be used for the delivery of provincial curriculum (including BC First Nations Studies 12 and English First Peoples 10, 11, and 12).All Board-approved courses should be covered by core funding, not targeted funding. Ministry-approved language IRPs cannot be funded with targeted dollars.
55 How much Targeted Aboriginal Education Funding is available per student? The supplementary grant for each Aboriginal Education headcount student (targeted) is $1160
56 “How can my Nation have a voice in how Targeted dollars are used?” Consider building into your LEA a provision that the First Nation must be meaningfully involved in the allocation of Targeted Aboriginal Education Funding, and set out that process in the LEA.First Nations can also negotiate to have a say through an EA.
57 Other BC Ministry of Education Funding and Services… Special Education ServicesCommunityLINKAdult Education
58 4.3 School District Funding Policies and Processes Boards of Education are responsible for collecting and submitting enrolment data to the Ministry on Form 1701: Student Data Collection (Appendix E).School funding is calculated based on this enrolment data.
59 4.4 First Nations Funding Agreements This section explains how the type of funding agreement through which a First Nation receives its federal funding has implications for LEAs.The new ARFAs are structured so they can be annual or multi-year arrangements and can accommodate both annual and multi-year agreements.Tripartite Education Framework Agreement
60 “Will the new funding model in TEFA impact LEAs?” Not directly, but in conjunction with TEFA, AANDC is increasing the Ancillary Services amount to support students attending provincial schools. Under TEFA, BC is also obliged to work with First Nations to achieve improved outcomes.Discussion and Feedback – What can we improve in Section 4?
61 Section 4.8 of TEFABC agrees that it will, in a manner consistent with clauses 5.1, 5.2 and 5.3 of the BC First Nation Education Agreement, consult with FNESC regarding:proposed changes to provincial education policy, legislation and standards that materially affect programs, assessments, teacher certification, graduation requirements or curriculum offered by FNESC or First Nations Schools.reasonable cost access to provincial learning resources; andaccess to provincial bulk purchase initiatives.
62 Negotiation and Implementation Strategies 5Looking at the Toolkit…Negotiation and Implementation Strategies
63 What’s in Section 5? Suggested First Steps Preparing for Negotiations Initial MeetingsThe Process of NegotiatingConcluding an Agreement
64 Introduction to the Section FNESC hopes that some of the ideas outlined in this section can be adapted by First Nations, as appropriate, to their unique needs and circumstances.Sen-pok-chin school seventh generation club member
65 5.1 Suggested First StepsThe importance of informing key members of the community, including Chief and Council, about the issues being considered…It may be helpful to review the How Are We Doing? (HAWD) Aboriginal Performance Report from the BC Ministry of Education.District level reports are availableFirst Nations level reports are availableThe Toolkit provides tips for establishing a strong LEA Negotiation Team.
66 Gathering your resources… When you start out, gather copies of the most current…LEAsEAsHAWD (including a HAWD specific to your First Nation)Accountability ContractsSchool ReportsLook online for many of these resources, or contact the Ministry…
67 Possible Agenda Items for a Community Meeting Review HAWD Reports, including a HAWD specific to your First NationDiscuss LEAs, EAs and District Achievement Contracts, and how they relate to each otherReview of the focus and goals of an LEA, including improved education success of First Nations students.Identify who will be on the LEA Negotiation Committee, their roles and responsibilities.Review sample Terms of Reference for an LEA Negotiation Committee (Appendix J)Discussion about an appropriate community consultation process.
68 5.2 Preparing for Negotiations Preparation is the key! Much of the time spent in LEA negotiation should be planning and negotiating within your own LEA Team.When planning internally, you should decide…What changes will help your students achieve greater success?What clauses do you think would be in an ideal LEA?What is the very least you would consider acceptable?What topics are negotiable to your community?What are some options for mutual gain – a win-win situation for the Nation and the school district?
69 5.3 Initial Meeting with Representatives of the School Board Confirm the agenda.Identify appropriate meeting practices, including relevant cultural protocols.Identify necessary tasks and responsibilities.Agree on communications/information sharing protocols.Set times and places of upcoming meetings.
70 Focus….When planning for LEA meetings and setting the agendas, plan each negotiation step around one or two key points to keep the discussions focused.We can all agree that improved First Nations achievement results are important.
71 5.4 The Process of Negotiating Do the Parties understand and agree upon the issues that are being negotiated?It is important to have a shared understanding that the LEA is about improving student achievement, not just about the process for paying tuition.Remind stakeholders that successful LEA implementation can benefit all learners in the school district
72 Elements of effective negotiation Effective NegotiatingBeing focusedStaying positiveListening to the other partyAssess progressBeing prepared
73 Write it down!During negotiations, when you reach a point of agreement, put it in writing and document the process leading up to that point of agreement. This will be helpful in case there is a disagreement later.
74 “What if we tried…?”…Move the negotiations in a positive direction by asking everyone to think of new ideas.
75 5.5 Concluding an Agreement Putting an agreement into action can be the most challenging part of the LEA process, emphasizing the need for a clearly written plan, including goals and timelines.It is important to develop an LEA implementation plan to keep everyone on track.
76 5.6 SummaryMeaningful and lasting change will require ongoing consultations with First Nations.FNESC welcomes further suggestions that will help First Nations to negotiate and implement successful LEAs.Discussion and Feedback – What can we improve in Section 5?
77 Introduction to the Sample LEA 6Looking at the Toolkit…Introduction to the Sample LEA
78 What’s in Section 6? Finding the sample online About the Sample “It is not legal advice.”Finding the sample online
79 Looking at the Sample LEA Find the sample in the last tab of the Toolkit.The sample is not intended to serve as legal advice.It is meant to offer assistance to First Nations, as a tool to refer to and adapt if they choose.The sample is available as a Word file at
80 WHEREAS….The “Preamble” sets out the context and limitations of the LEA.It is a snapshot of the relationship at this particular point in time.It can assist with LEA interpretation.
81 THEREFORE the Parties agree as follows The “Definitions” section lets the parties make sure that they share a common understanding of the terms used in the LEA.You can remove those terms that don’t appear in your LEA. Terms can also be added and edited.Note that definitions can change over time (i.e. with new provincial or federal policy).
82 2.0 Purpose This section describes what the LEA is intended to do. In the sample, we are suggesting that the purpose statement emphasize shared responsibility and accountability, and building effective working relationships that improve First Nations education outcomes.If the parties can agree on the purpose(s) of the LEA, it will make LEA negotiation easier.
83 3.0 Principles“Principles” serve as guidelines for the relationship. They can reinforce the importance of First Nations language and culture in the education of First Nations students.They can set out expectations for accountability.
84 4.0 Objectives“Objectives” expand on the purposes and principles in greater details.This section can help increase mutual understanding about expectations.
85 5.0 Responsibilities and Commitments This section describes the steps that each party will take to implement the LEA and achieve its purposes and objectives.The steps should be consistent with the “Principles.”It is not intended to be an exhaustive list, but it is important that the Parties discuss and identify all actions that they think are necessary to achieve the purpose of the LEA.
86 6.0 Curriculum and Resources In this section, the Parties can identify how they will work together to:improve and develop curriculum and resources for First Nations students; andbuild awareness about First Nations language, history and culture in the district.
87 7.0 Assessment, Placement and Intervention This section sets out expectations regarding the assessment and placement of First Nations Students, including Vulnerable Students.The goal is to meet student needs and ensure that parents/guardians have a clear and meaningful role.
88 8.0 Special EducationThis section describes how Special Education assessments, placements and reporting will take place.The role of the parent/guardian is carefully set out in the sample LEA.
89 9.0 Student Conduct and Safety This section describes how student conduct issues will be addressed.They relate to issues that include student discipline, student safety (i.e. anti-bullying, antiracism), etc.
90 10.0 Cultural Awareness & Hiring in the School District This section contains steps to promote cross-cultural awareness and help increase the number of First Nations personnel within the district.See further information in Toolkit Section 9BCTF Employment Equity Programapplying for exemption under section 42 of the Human Rights Code
91 11.0 ReportingThis section describes what information will be reported, how it will be reported and who will receive the reports.Reporting is very important for accountability, successful LEA implementation, and evaluating progress.
92 12.0 CommunicationThis section sets out what communication tools will be used who will communicate to who.It is meant to build and improve relationships and help achieve the LEA purposes and objectives.
93 13.0 Tuition PaymentThis section sets out the process and schedule for payment of tuition from the First Nation to the Board.It can include a plan for how to address such issues as labour disputes and Early School Leavers.
94 14.0 DefaultThis section clarifies what happens in case of a default under the Agreement.It may be a referral to a dispute resolution process, for instance.
95 15.0 Monitoring, Review & Implementation This section explains what steps the parties will take to implement the agreement and achieve its purpose/objectives.It is important to discuss and identify all actions that the Parties deem necessary, to avoid misunderstandings.It is not intended to be an exhaustive or exclusive list.
96 16.0 Dispute ResolutionThis section sets out a mutually acceptable process for addressing any disputes that may arise.The process set out in the sample is just one possible model.
97 17.0 Term and AmendmentThis section describes the date for the agreement to begin and end.LEAs must have defined terms (required by AANDC).The term should coincide with or reflect the fact that they are tied to funding agreements between the First Nation and AANDC.
98 18.0 NoticesThis sets out basic contact information for each Party.
99 19.0 GeneralThis section includes provisions often found in agreements between First Nations and other Parties.The sample includes non-derogation and without prejudice provisions in relation to Aboriginal and treaty rights.Discussion and Feedback – What can we improve in this sample LEA?
100 Sample Correspondence 7Looking at the Toolkit…Sample Correspondence
101 Sample letters and templates What’s in Section 7?Begin NegotiationsBegin LEA RenewalImplementation TimelineAddressing an LEA ChallengeRequest a Strategy SessionSample letters and templates
102 Sample letters and implementation timeline We have tried to offer the types of sample documents that might be helpful to First Nations at different stages of the LEA process.They are meant to be a starting point that can be adapted.All of these letters are now available online.Discussion and Feedback – What can we improve in this section?
103 Relevant School Act & Policy Provisions 8Looking at the Toolkit…Relevant School Act & Policy Provisions
104 What’s in Section 8?This section reprints relevant parts of the BC School Act:Agreements with First NationsSchool PlansSchool Planning CouncilsRole of a School Planning CouncilAchievement Contracts (more details follow)Superintendents of Achievement (more details follow)
105 Achievement Contracts Achievement Contracts are three year plans that include standards for student performance, plans for improving student achievement, literacy, early learning programs and other matters ordered by the Minister –FNESC wants targets for Aboriginal achievements in the Achievement Contract.
106 Superintendent of Aboriginal Achievement DRAFT for Discussion PurposesSuperintendent of Aboriginal AchievementDeDe DeRose was announced as the first-ever Superintendent of Aboriginal Achievement. She began August 1, 2012.Her role will be to identify ways to support improved Aboriginal student achievement, which may include redesign and development of Ministry curriculum and assessment programs, as well as building personalized learning opportunities and providing leadership to help strengthen Aboriginal completion rates.The role of Superintendent of Achievement is an accountability measure in the School Act.This is a position of a superintendent of Aboriginal achievement is one FNESC has always asked for.We also want targets in the achievement contracts.If the Minister requires a special report, that would help give increased attention to the needs of our learners
107 Superintendent of Aboriginal Achievement DRAFT for Discussion PurposesSuperintendent of Aboriginal AchievementSuperintendents of Achievement are empowered under the School Act.The role of Superintendent of Aboriginal Achievement is one that FNESC has worked hard to make happen, and we acknowledge that it is a clear indication of the Ministry’s commitment to increased achievement of Aboriginal students.FNESC recommends that the new Superintendent of Aboriginal Achievement will oversee school district achievement contracts to monitor targets for Aboriginal student achievement.- We are appreciative to the Ministry for making this new position happen!Discussion and Feedback – What can we improve in this section?
108 Further Partnership Opportunities 9Looking at the Toolkit…Further Partnership Opportunities
109 What’s in Section 9?This section describes other resources and opportunities to support the negotiation and implementation of LEAs:Superintendents of AchievementReporting by School Boards to First NationsIndividual First Nation “How Are We Doing?” ReportApplication for Exemption under the Human Rights CodeDiscussion and Feedback – What can we improve in this section?
111 What’s in Section 10?This section includes web links to many of the documents referenced in the Toolkit, and related documents.These will be available on the FNESC LEA web-page for easy linking and updating.
113 Discussion and Feedback What else do we need to do to support the development of LEAs and ultimately, support our students to be successful in school?Please take some time to finish your Feedback Workbook, and then enter the draw!
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