Schools throughout SD 71 will be holding a week of activities for Truth and Reconciliation Week from Sept. 26 to 30. This will be a time for students and staff to recognize and remember the history of residential schools, and to honour survivors, their families and communities.
In December 2021, the board for Comox Valley Schools passed a unanimous motion to make the last week of September Truth and Reconciliation Week in SD 71. This week will be an annual kickoff point to honour Orange Shirt Day, followed by the Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls Red Dress Campaign, and the Walk for Wenjack Secret Path week in October.
“All schools in SD 71 are hosting events to commemorate Truth and Reconciliation Week to revisit the truth of our history, honour residential school survivors, and learn from Indigenous knowledge keepers,” SD 71 board chair Tonia Frawley said. “It’s crucial that all students in SD 71 learn about the history of residential schools and understand their intergenerational impact – this recognition and commemoration are essential in working toward meaningful reconciliation.”
Queneesh Elementary and SD 71’s Indigenous Education program are assisting by sending two local residential school survivors to the National Day for Truth and Reconciliation events in Niagara Falls, Ont. Queneesh fundraised to send an elder and a support person. SD 71’s Indigenous Education program is also helping send another staff member who is a survivor to this important event.
Comox Valley Schools is committed to Truth and Reconciliation, and recognizing this important week to help build awareness and understanding of the different experiences that have shaped our past and our future. There are many different activities and learning opportunities happening in schools throughout the week. There will be updates on Comox Valley Schools social media pages and website.