Truth and Reconciliation Commission Report: Canadian public education should include the residential school system

According to the CBC, the Truth and Reconciliation Commission will release a report outlining recommendations for governments and public bodies as it relates to the health and education of and about Aboriginal peoples. The commission was established to research and seek the truth about the effects and impact of the residential school system imposed on Aboriginal people in the 1870s. Their work includes conducting interviews with survivors of residential schools.

A comprehensive understanding of Canadian history should include an understanding of the operation of residential school systems on Aboriginal families, and the impact this has had on Aboriginal communities all throughout Canada.

Aboriginal peoples placed in this schooling system were frequently plucked from their homes against the will of their parents. There, oppressive and rigid rules prevented them from speaking their native tongue or engage in cultural activities. In short, the residential school system worked to assimilate and conform Aboriginal people to Canadian/European ways and identity. As a result, the residential school system has contributed to many social issues still being faced by Aboriginal individuals and communities.

The Commission also recommends the creation of a facility in Nunavut as a place for mental health care and support for Aboriginal individuals who have been affected by residential schools directly, or indirectly through family members who are survivors.

To read more about the Truth and Reconciliation Commission, and the entire list of recommendations in their interim report, click here.

To read the full CBC article, “Report urges residential school history classes”, click here.

2 Comments on "Truth and Reconciliation Commission Report: Canadian public education should include the residential school system"

  1. Rosalind Ballanger, Osgoode Hall Law School | 27/02/2012 at 11:47 am |

    Thanks for posting this Zoe. It is easy to forget that this important part of history is left out of our current education system.

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