Truth and Reconciliation Day student opinions 

Finn Price/Staff reporter 

The common consensus is that residential schools were awful, but how do students feel about the damage that was caused by them, or the age at which we should teach students about them? 

When it comes to Truth and Reconciliation Day many think of the iconic orange shirt, but few know the story of why we wear it. The orange shirt has become symbolic of how Indigenous people were stripped of their culture in residential schools. The orange shirt is based off the story of Phyllis Webstand who bought a sparkly orange shirt for her first day of school only to have it stripped away. 

Two people wearing orange shirts that have the words Every Child Matters

Orange shirt day movement 

Most students believe residential schools were awful, but most believe that children in elementary schools shouldn’t learn or be educated about them as they have such a graphic legacy.  This idea was encapsulated in the quote from Rodyn Rostam “…definitely under middle school is too young…”. However, Linda Isaac, an educator from the Alderville First Nation in Ontario, believes that all children should be educated, just in a different way. She believes that young children should instead be taught about the traditional Indigenous lifestyle and importance of family so that they will understand how harmful residential schools were on the children sent there. 

When it comes to the vandalism caused by the unmarked graves being found, most students understand the anger but disagree with the outcome of it. One student who was interviewed stated “I understand why they are angry, but I think it is a great over reaction.” 

Church burned down as a result of unmarked graves being discovered 

Truth and Reconciliation Day is about trying to acknowledge the past and reconcile all the cultural bleaching and abuse that took place at these schools.