Black Gold School Division


  • Statement on Orange Shirt Day

    Posted on    Posted in Featured, General, Truth & reconciliation

    September 30, 2022, is the National Day for Truth and Reconciliation. All Black Gold School Division schools will be closed. Schools will mark Orange Shirt Day on September 29 by wearing orange shirts, holding remembrance ceremonies, and engaging in learning activities to explore the diverse cultures, experiences, and stories of Canada’s First Nations, Inuit, and Métis peoples. 

    Orange Shirt Day is a day to raise awareness of the continuing impacts of residential schools and to promote the idea that  “Every Child Matters.”  It is a day of commemoration, reflection and learning, and offers us with an important opportunity to honour the Indian residential school survivors, their families and communities, and to ensure the history and horrific legacies of residential schools remains an important part of our nation’s truth and reconciliation process.

    “I was significantly impacted by the discovery of the unmarked graves and the stories of pain and terror that many young children and their families endured,” said Board Chair Esther Eckert. “Orange Shirt Day is a reminder for me, and all of us, to compassionately reflect on the generational scars that continue to be a part of many lives, and to do what we can in order to be a part of the healing process.”

    “At Black Gold, we support initiatives that actively promote the successful implementation of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission’s Calls to Action 62 to 65,” said Superintendent of Schools Bill Romanchuk. “To that end, the Division recognizes the importance of cultural protocols for many Indigenous Peoples, and acknowledges reconciliation as an active process which requires taking time to create safe and ethical spaces that embrace Indigenous ceremonies in our school communities.”

    “As a reflection of its commitment to reconciliation, the Division has purchased licensing for the 4 Seasons of Reconciliation online course,” said BGSD Indigenous Lead Teacher Michelle Haveroen. “This workplace course is open to everyone who works with our students and for our schools, including our bus drivers, secretaries, educational assistants, trustees, school councils, teachers, student services personnel, and Division Office staff.” 

    The course provides foundational knowledge about the relationships between Canada and Indigenous Peoples, the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada, including Indigenous peoples’ history, the legacies of residential schools, and treaties. It also promotes a renewed relationship based on reconciliation and mutual respect between Indigenous and non-Indigenous peoples. 

    As a sign of respect for the Truth and Reconciliation process, flags at all Black Gold schools will be lowered to half mast at the end of the day on Thursday, and then returned to full height after Friday. 

    Find out more about the National Day for Truth and Reconciliation.

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