Residential schools were a dark time for Canada. The treaties state that First Nations people have the right to education and First Nations people believed they would have schools built on reserves. But the Government of Canada saw this as an opportunity to assimilate and colonize children. Residential schools or institutions was another way to assimilate the First Nations, Inuit, and Métis people. The schools were designed to take the ‘Indian out of the child.’
CREDIT: PRINCE ALBERT HISTORICAL SOCIETY
All Saints Residential School at Lac La Ronge. Children were taken from their families and forced to live in residential schools.
First Nations children were taken from their homes and put into residential schools. The children rarely got to go home and see their parents. They were not allowed to speak their language, practice their culture in any way, or wear their traditional clothing. They had their long hair cut; long hair was very spiritually significant to First Nation people. Many children were abused in the residential schools, and many lost their lives due to illness and disease.
Can you imagine being taken away from your parents and not being allowed to speak your language or wear your clothes?
Children in residential schools often had to work long hours doing housework and farming activities.
PHOTO CREDIT: PROVINCIAL ARCHIVES OF SASKATCHEWAN
Children would be forced to work long hours at residential schools.
Children in residential schools were not allowed to live with their family and missed out on knowledge that had been passed down for generations. Many lost their language and their culture.
Residential Schools were the cause of intergenerational trauma for years to come. The impact is still being felt today.