Legacy of Residential Schools

An understanding of First Nations, Métis and Inuit experiences related to forced assimilation and residential schools and their legacies involves the following terms, concepts and knowledge.

Concepts of Assimilation

  • Colonization
  • Eurocentrism
  • Decolonization
  • Paternalism
  • Cultural Genocide

Residential Schools and their Legacy

  • Residential school experiences
    • Differences between residential schools
      • Location and resources
      • Religious denominations
    • Historical and intergenerational trauma
    • Loss of language and culture, identity, community and family
  • Social implications
    • i.e., Education; suicide rates; substance abuse; negative associations with schools; mental health and wellness issues
    • Societal inequity (socio-economic gaps), racism, stereotyping
  • Sixties Scoop

The First Nations, Métis and Inuit Professional Learning website provides educators with supports and tools to design and facilitate professional learning. It offers curricular resources that build capacity, engage learners and build paths toward reconciliation through education.

The Learning to Know pillar webpage provides a wide range of professional tools and supports to develop foundational knowledge and understandings of historical events and current contexts, including the legacy of residential schools. This webpage includes features to help you self-assess your capacity and a photo resource gallery with numerous links to sources, websites and resources. Links to resources includes the Legacy of Hope Foundation, Forgotten: The Métis Residential School Experience Exhibit, Project of Hope and the Brain Architecture Game.

Supporting Resources

First Nations, Métis and Inuit Education: Residential School Education

This Edmonton Public Schools website provides links to resources related to residential school education. It also provides links to literature related to this topic, organized by division.

Impact of Residential Schools Workshop Facilitator Guide

This workshop facilitator guide provides content and process for Impacts of Residential Schools. The content in this workshop provides participants with experiences of First Nations, Métis and Inuit people in Alberta. It is through the telling of stories on the residential school experience that implications of intergenerational trauma will be understood.

Métis History and Experience and Residential Schools in Canada

The story of the Métis and residential schools is not new; it is, though, a story that has been underemphasized for a long time in the realms of both residential school and Métis history. The three reports included in this document focus on the general experience of the Métis and residential schools. More importantly, the three reports give a great deal of insight into why Métis voices may have been silent in the past and why they are starting to be heard today.

National Centre for Truth and Reconciliation

The education section of the National Centre for Truth and Reconciliation website provides resources to help educators understand and share the history of residential schools with students.