Wild Rose School Division is open on National Truth and Reconciliation Day
When building the Wild Rose School Division calendar for the 2022-2023 school year, the WRSD Executive Team considered closing all schools on September 30 to honour National Truth and Reconciliation Day. We also considered our commitment to Action #62 from the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada Calls to Action; “Make age-appropriate curriculum on residential schools, Treaties, and Aboriginal peoples’ historical and contemporary contributions to Canada a mandatory education requirement for Kindergarten to Grade Twelve students”.
Our team chose not to make this decision unilaterally and invited input from Treaty 6 Elders who live within the Wild Rose School Division jurisdictional boundaries. Elders from Big Horn, Sunchild, O’Chiese, Alexis and Paul Bands along with an Elder from the Métis 845 were invited to an Elders Circle on December 15, 2022 to provide us with guidance in making this decision. Although some Elders sent their regrets, we had representatives from four of the six nations.
The guidance given to us was to keep the schools open to support students and staff in understanding the historical events of Residential Schools and the contextual realities which have impacted First Nations, Métis and Inuit people and its effect on student learning.
Throughout the month of September, schools are accessing support from two newly hired Indigenous Education Specialists along with local Elders, drummers and other Knowledge Keepers to help us learn and honor residential school survivors and remembering those children that did not make it home. Each school in Wild Rose School Division is hosting various student activities on Friday, September 30 to honor National Truth and Reconciliation Day.