top of page

SDIS Staff

Becca Headshot 2.jpg

Rebecca Niiha has worked extensively as an educator in New Mexico. Rebecca’s classrooms foster authenticity, self-determination, indigenous education, and revolution. As a Pueblo woman (Hopi), who taught students on the sovereign nations of Zuni Pueblo & the Navajo Nation, Rebecca partners with her students to be both co-learners and co-teachers. Her practice centers around students decolonizing their own education and engaging in high-level thinking together as a family. She asserts students must explore how their identities, histories, cultures, languages, and values shape their worldview. Rebecca’s classes mobilize the community around relevant social issues, honoring their people and ancestors, and asserting tribal sovereignty.

Rebecca is a 2017 recipient of Teach For America’s Sue Lehmann Teaching & Learning Fellowship.

Renee Cleveland - Programs Coordinator

Renee has been here since the school started, as a substitute, an E.A and now serves as our Attendance Coach. As such, she is always on top of making sure our students are in good standing with their attendance. If she is not in the office busy, she is the main staff raising funds in our school events or making certain the students have proper meals by cooking the schools lunch herself. Renee also is the main overseer for our Americorps Program, helping our school have all its necessities to properly function.


Melvin Chico
Navajo Language and Culture Teacher

Ya'at'eeh - Greetings

Welcome to the Navajo Language and Culture Class.

Woshdee' yah iina doo Ya'at'eeh. Shi'ei Dine Bizaad 

Mr. Chico ei Ba'olta'i Nishili

Melvin Chico is my name. My clan is Bitter Water, born for Mexican People. My maternal grandfather is Salt CLan, and my paternal grandfather is Black Sheep. I am married to Elsi, and we reside in the Yahtahey, NM. My degrees are BS in Science and Social Studies, and MS in School Leadership from NAU-Flagstaff, Arizona. Moreover, I obtained Level 1 Licensure to teach Native Language and Culture. I have worked here at Six Directions Indigenous School for six months and enjoy working with the students and staff. 

In Navajo Language and Culture teacher, we will be learning about clanship and family relationships and Ke'. Students will learn to formally introduce themselves in their own Dine language. Other topics include Dine character and core values, such as respect, responsibility, and other Dine values. Dine students will be expected to write summaries about what they learned, complete projects and other small activities. I am excited that your student will learn to communicate orally by learning the alphabet, consonants, and vowels. I am hoping each student will have a positive learning and fun experience this school year. Other topics to be covered will be character building, the Four-sacred mountains, traditional foods, symbols, cultural sites and others. High school student topics include the Navajo Nation government, Navajo History-the Long Walk, the Treaty of 1868 just to name a few. Ahe'hee'



bottom of page