Wednesday, Sept. 27, 2023
To Near North District School Board families, staff, and community partners,
Sept. 30 is the National Day for Truth and Reconciliation, which honours the children who did not return home from residential schools, the survivors of residential schools and their families.
Near North District School Board (NNDSB) is acknowledging the day tomorrow (Sept. 28) as the National Day for Truth and Reconciliation falls on a Saturday, and Friday is a PA day. It is of utmost importance to NNDSB that staff and students have time together to honour truth and reconciliation.
The National Day for Truth and Reconciliation is held the same day as Orange Shirt Day, an Indigenous-led initiative that raises awareness of the impacts of residential schools. We encourage members of our school communities to wear orange on Sept. 28 (in school) and on Sept. 30.
Near North District School Board (NNDSB) understands the important role it has in truth and reconciliation. This is something we work towards every day. We continue to learn from Indigenous staff, students and community, and support all staff and students in their journey of learning more about residential schools and their lingering effects.
Upon the conclusion of its work, the Truth and Reconciliation Commission released its report and 94 Calls to Action. Several of those Calls to Action address education for reconciliation. NNDSB continues to respond to the 94 Calls to Action through offering language programs, providing safe spaces for Indigenous youth, programming, events and culturally responsive training and activities.
We hope you take time to reflect upon the solemnity of what truth and reconciliation means, and the impact it had, and continues to have, on our friends and neighbours.
Here are some ideas on how families can honour the day at home:
- visit the Indigenous Education Truth and Reconciliation resource page;
- read a book together that shares the truth about residential schools in Canada;
- learn about Phyllis Webstad and the origins of Orange Shirt Day;
- talk about what truth and reconciliation means;
- visit an Indigenous community near you;
- visit an Indigenous community website;
- attend a local event in your community.
Erika Lougheed Craig Myles
Chair of the Board Director of Education