This critical ethnography is a study of how the interfaces between Western educational structures and Native cultural structures function in the daily operations of a privately owned school in a Native community, drawbacks and strengths of both Western and Native cultural structures, and current challenges in relating to the mixtures of philosophy, value systems and socialization expectations of these systems. The review of literature exposed a variety of assumptions regarding individualism, bureaucratization, homogenization, universalism, meritocracy, and rationalization reflected in Western educational structures. To some degree, the Native community under study recognized and appreciated the fairness and order that these elements of structure sought to bring to decision- making. However, the Native community prioritized long-term relationships nurtured through visiting and localized events that capitalized on community interaction, local ways of knowing, cultural values, and self-determination. Short,practical, apprentice-style trainings in local fields were more valued than long-term professional training far from their communities.