The residential school system of canada

Annett I awoke this morning to the same familiar sounds of east Hastings street, as birdsong was smothered by traffic's din - a day after a government "apology", and a decade after a Tribunal that started everything. Faces have come and gone in one day, and in thirty six hundred, but the same cold reality stared back at me today in the hard eyes of angry desperation of the men and women, mostly aboriginal, who share these streets, and who never rest.

The residential school system of canada

Aboriginal peoples can be removed from reserves located near or within towns of more than 8, inhabitants. Indians can vote without having to give up their Indian status. Transfer of control of the schools to Indian bands begins. This does not include the many schools that were not of the agreement.

It was the first in a series of violent conflicts in the late 20th century between Aboriginal Peoples and the Canadian government. It calls for a public inquiry into the effects of residential schools upon generations of First Peoples.

This undertaking grew in structure and purpose, especially between andwhen the governing officials of early Canada joined with Roman Catholic, Anglican, Methodist, United, and Presbyterian churches to create and operate the residential school system.

The residential school system of canada

This partnership came to an end when the federal government took over sole management of the schools, and then began transferring the control of First Nations education to Indian bands. The last federally-run residential school, Gordon Indian Residential School in Saskatchewan, closed in One common objective defined this period: However, the political and economic changes brought about by events in the nineteenth century soon made it a critical one.

Astutely realizing the long-term impact of these changes on their traditional lives and cultures, a number of Aboriginal leaders engaged in negotiations with religious orders and government officials to create an equitable education system for all.

Both sides were to profit from this partnership: First Nations communities would have access to an education that they believed would give their children a chance to participate in mainstream society on equal terms. And the schools would give the missionaries a means to teach Christian doctrine.

The residential school system of canada

Anishnaabe Leader Chief Shingwauk, also advocated for education of Aboriginal children, but an education that combined both Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal teachings.

The men who served on the Bagot Commissionfor example, proposed that the separation of children from their parents would be the best way to achieve assimilation, and in his Report on Native EducationEgerton Ryerson, Superintendent for Education, reiterated this idea, and also recommended that Aboriginal education focus on religious instruction and on agricultural training.

The promise of a sea-to-sea Dominion of Canada depended, in part, on the settlement of the west.

Forgotten Metis

However, this would prove to be a difficult goal to achieve: Besides, the west was already occupied. Unlike the Aboriginal people in the east who were in the process of being assimilated into mainstream culture to varying degrees, the western tribal groups maintained their autonomous ways of life.

However, the Homestead Act required that title to the land needed to be secured before the building could start, which set in motion a treaty-making process with western Aboriginal leaders. The project of settling the prairies began in earnest.

Politicians immediately got busy drafting the necessary legislation, and in the early decades of Confederation, they passed the following two acts: With such legislative groundwork established, a case was soon after made to develop an educational strategy that would completely assimilate Aboriginal children.

This signaled an end to traditional lifestyles, and Western Aboriginal leaders realized that the survival of their people would, in part, depend on the acquisition of new skills. Specialized education and training now became a critical issue in treaty negotiations.

Large tracts of ancestral lands were subsequently ceded to the Dominion government in exchange for the promise of a good education for Aboriginal children, among other stipulations.

Momentum began to build for an education program that would fulfill treaty obligations, and at the same time, work to civilize, Christianize, and assimilate Aboriginal children into the Canadian mainstream. Politicians and educators continued to debate how this could best be accomplished.

Davin submitted his findings in the Report on Industrial Schools for Indians and Half-breeds, also known as the Davin Report, which included a number of recommendations on how the American policy on Aboriginal education could be emulated in Canada. The utility of Industrial Schools has long been acknowledged by our neighbours across the line [in the United States], who have had much to do with the Indian.

In that country, as in this, it is found difficult to make day schools on reserves a success, because the influence of home associations is stronger than that of the schools, and so long as such a state of things exists I fear that the inherited aversion to labour can never be successfully met.

The Residential School System

By the children being separated from their parents and properly and regularly instructed not only in the rudiments of the English language, but also in trades and agriculture, so that what is taught may not be readily forgotten, I can but assure myself that a great end will be attained for the permanent and lasting benefit of the Indian.Gentle Readers, i f you read this page to the end, and stay in the moment while doing so, you are to be congratulated.

I know it is difficult to believe that Canada, a western democratic nation of such rich cultural diversity, a nation of highly respected global peacekeepers, carries shame and prejudice of this magnitude towards thousands and thousands of its own citizens.

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Reclaiming History: The Residential School System in Canada. Fur trade companies based in England and Lower Canada (Quebec) begin trading for furs with First Nations peoples.

A Directory of Residential Schools in Canada Un répertoire des pensionnats au Canada The Aboriginal Healing Foundation thanks the following organizations, without whose assistance this publication would. Misconceptions of Canada’s Indian Residential School System There is ample evidence that the church and government worked together to keep known.

Two primary objectives of the residential school system were to remove and isolate children from the influence of their homes, families, traditions and cultures, .

Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada (TRC)