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Edmonton Catholic Schools

Superintendent's Message - Orange Shirt Day

"The residential school experience is one of the darkest, most troubling chapters in our collective history." 

— Justice Murray Sinclair, Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC) Chairman

On Orange Shirt Day, we acknowledge Canada’s Indigenous history and remember all the children and families whose lives were irrevocably changed through the tragedy that is to be found in residential schools.  It is a time to honor those who survived, and to remember those who did not.

Orange Shirt Day finds its roots in the story of Phyllis Webstad, a 6-year-old girl who was stripped of her shiny, new orange shirt when she entered a residential school.  You can see Phyllis tell her moving story below.

The National Centre for Truth and Reconciliation,,  was established to create an enduring archive of the stories of residential schools.  It is a rich repository of text and of video from the work of the TRC that provides many opportunities for us to use the powerful tool of education as an integral part of the journey to reconciliation. 

Typically the recognition of this event is on September 30 but this year I invite you to join me in wearing an orange shirt on Friday, September 28, 2018, to show that we commit to the principle that Every Child Matters. I am very proud to represent Edmonton Catholic Schools and our commitment to the work of Truth and Reconciliation at the Orange Shirt Day event at City Hall on Friday at noon and look forward to sharing this day with some of our staff and students!

Please visit our website and click on the banner The Journey to Truth and Reconciliation in Edmonton Catholic Schools to view the story of what the work of the TRC looks like in our schools and sites.

Joan Carr