by Deanna L.
The Canadian Residential School System was created by the federal government in the 1800s. The government operated the Residential Schools in partnership with various religious churches such as Anglican, Methodist, Presbyterian, and Catholic. Residential schools were government-funded schools to assimilate First Nations children into mainstream Canadian society, stripping them of their religion, culture, and identity. Within the walls of all Residential Schools, countless unlawful and inhumane actions were committed. These treacherous acts have now been exposed to the world through the Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC).
Residential school students were forced to learn about and were pressured to embrace Christianity. They were forbidden to speak their own Indigenous languages and were punished if they had done so.
Residential schools could be found in ten of Canada’s provinces and territories. Though the last residential school closed in 1996, the schools’ terrible legacy continues to be felt today.