Residential Schools in Canada and their Impact

What are Residential Schools and How They Have Affected Indigenous Communities in Canada?

Residential schools in Canada were a system of educational institutions set up by the Canadian government to assimilate Indigenous children into Euro-Canadian culture. These schools removed Indigenous children from their families and communities, often forcibly, and provided them with an education that was intended to erase their cultural identity. 

The effects of residential schools on Indigenous communities have been devastating and long-lasting, resulting in an intergenerational trauma that continues to this day. In this article, we will explore the history of residential schools in Canada and discuss the lasting impacts they have had on Indigenous people.

Facts & Figures About the Residential School System in Canada

The Residential School System in Canada is a dark chapter in Canadian history. This system was designed to assimilate Indigenous children into Canadian society, and it had devastating effects on the Indigenous communities. It is important to understand the facts and figures of this system so that we can learn from our mistakes and move forward in a better way.

In this article, we will look at some of the facts and figures about the Residential School System in Canada.

  • The Residential School System was in place from the late 18th century to the mid-20th century.
  • The purpose of these schools was to educate Indigenous children without their parents and families.
  • In total, about 150,000 children were removed from their homes by force and sent to Residential Schools across Canada, 80% of which are estimated. The term residential school refers to a network of over sixty boarding schools set up by churches or government agencies for Indigenous peoples in Canada as part of a policy of cultural genocide that lasted from the late 18th century until 1996.
  • The schools were created to assimilate Indigenous children into European society and erase their cultures and languages.
  • There were approximately 1,500 Residential Schools run by the Federal Government and 792 Residential Schools run by Manitoba alone. 

Top 7 best residential schools in Canada

Canada is home to some of the best residential schools in the world. These schools offer an exceptional education, a safe and supportive environment, and lots of opportunities for students to grow and develop. 

In this blog post, we will be discussing the top 7 best residential schools in Canada. We will look at the features, facilities, and benefits that make them stand out from other residential schools in Canada. We will also provide some insights into why these schools are considered the best in Canada.

1. St. Michael’s Indian Residential School

St. Michael’s Indian Residential School is one of the best residential schools in Canada. Established in 1879, St. Michael’s was the longest-operating residential school for Indigenous children in Canada, having served generations of First Nations, Métis, and Inuit students until its closure in 1998. 

Over the years, St. Michael’s has provided many students with a safe and nurturing environment while also providing them with an education rooted in their Indigenous culture and values.

2. Lakefield College School

Lakefield College School is the best residential school in Canada. Located in the picturesque town of Lakefield, Ontario, the school provides a top-notch education for its students. Whether it’s academics, athletics, or extracurricular activities, there are plenty of opportunities to explore and grow. 

The college also has a strong commitment to sustainability and environmental stewardship that sets it apart from other schools. With teachers dedicated to providing individualized attention and guidance, Lakefield College School is truly a unique place for learning and growth.

3. Upper Canada College

Founded in 1829, Upper Canada College (UCC) is one of the best residential schools in Canada. It is a private, all-boys day and boarding school located in Toronto, Ontario. 

UCC offers an exceptional education to its students and prides itself on its commitment to academic excellence, leadership development, and character formation. With its outstanding faculty and top-notch facilities, UCC provides students with an environment where they can reach their full potential.

4. Trinity College School

Trinity College School is one of Canada’s best residential schools. Located in Port Hope, Ontario, and established in 1865, this school offers a diverse and comprehensive range of education, from kindergarten to grade twelve. 

With an emphasis on developing the whole person’s mind, body, and spirit, Trinity College School offers students a unique learning environment with dedicated teachers, a caring community, and an abundance of extracurricular activities.

5. Bishop Strachan School

Bishop Strachan School is one of the best residential schools in Canada. Located in Toronto, this esteemed school offers education for students from Grade 3 to Grade 12, with a wide range of activities and programs. The school has been recognized for its excellence in academics, athletics, and extracurricular activities.

Students at Bishop Strachan School are encouraged to strive for excellence, develop leadership skills and participate in a range of experiences within and outside the school’s community. With its highly qualified faculty and staff as well as modern facilities, Bishop Strachan School has proven to be an outstanding choice for students from all backgrounds.

6. Havergal College

Havergal College is one of the best residential schools in Canada for girls. It has a long history of excellence and provides its students with an exceptional education that prepares them to become successful and fulfilled adults. Havergal College offers a variety of academic, athletic, extracurricular, and social programs that are designed to empower each student to reach their full potential.

The college also boasts numerous awards, including being recognized as one of the top 10 boarding schools in Canada. With its strong commitment to education, Havergal College is the perfect place for any girl who wants to reach her highest potential.

7. Columbia International College

Columbia International College is one of the best residential schools in Canada, offering students unparalleled academic excellence in a supportive environment. With over 2,500 students from over 90 countries around the world, it provides a unique opportunity to experience the world through its global education, diverse student body, and rich cultural activities. 

The college offers outstanding facilities and resources for learning with its state-of-the-art classrooms and laboratories. Academic programs are tailored to meet the needs of all students and support their individual goals. With top faculty and dedicated staff members, Columbia International College is committed to providing an exemplary educational experience.

How Residential Schools Affected Native People in Canada

The legacy of residential schools on Indigenous peoples in Canada is a heartbreaking and devastating one. For over 130 years, Indigenous children were forcibly removed from their families and sent to these schools where they were subjected to physical, emotional, and psychological abuse. This trauma has had lasting impacts on Indigenous communities throughout Canada, with intergenerational trauma still being felt today. As a society, we must acknowledge the wrongdoings of the past and focus on healing these wounds so that all Canadians can live in a more equitable and just society.

Many different types of trauma can result from the experiences of residential schools in Canada, including physical and sexual abuse, racism, and poverty. The impacts of residential schools on Indigenous peoples in Canada have been significant and lasting. Aboriginal Residential Schools were a result of colonization as part of the 19th-century policy to assimilate Aboriginal people into white society through cultural genocide. This policy involved government policies that disrupted traditional social structures and family life for children, often separating them from their families for months or years at a time. These practices resulted in extreme cultural dislocation which caused psychological trauma for those removed.

Read also: University of Alberta

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