As we know, today is the National Day for Truth and Reconciliation.
When it was announced, it was met with confusion and an unsure plan as to what it actually means and what will actually happen. There were different levels of acceptance across Canada.
The day honours the lost children and Survivors of residential schools, their families and communities. Public commemoration of the tragic and painful history and ongoing impacts of residential schools is a vital component of the reconciliation process.
My news sources have had a mixture of references. Sadly, I feel, there have been too many resources outlining what will be open and what will be closed, just as we would expect in any other day. In particular, I’m thinking of Remembrance Day.
In education, there has been an outpouring and sharing of resources and ideas. Yesterday, I did a bit of sharing in that vein as well. I know that well intentioned educators want to do the very best for this day. Facebook users might turn to this page for additional ideas.
This a rather unique day with the late passage of the Royal Assent of the proclamation. Educators have been working to make the day meaningful for students and themselves.
I know that many of us are frustrated that we didn’t grow up educated in the issues. I am still angered after I learned that I grew up within an hour’s drive of an Indian Residential School. I have been learning ever since.
My fear is that September 30 may be considered just another event day. A day to be recognized and then we move on, on October 1.
Instead, I would hope that people consider that this day is the beginning or a renewal of understanding of the history of Indian Residential Schools and a somber understanding of the children who lost their lives there and for those who survived.. Our generation has a great deal of learning to fully understand. We know the voices that we need to listen to. It’s an opportunity to learn alongside students going forward.
One single day just won’t do it.