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'We are committed to truth and reconciliation': Prince George teachers association responds to inappropriate residential schools assignment

Krista MacInnis - Abbotsford
Krista MacInnis shares a homework assignment given to her Grade Six daughter that instructs students to write down 'positive experiences with residential schools.' (via Submitted)

The following letter was sent to PrinceGeorgeMatters by Joanne Hapke, President of the Prince George District Teachers Association (PGDTA). 

Given recent media coverage about education and residential schools, the table officers of the Prince George District Teachers Association wish to reassure community members in Prince George that we are committed to truth and reconciliation in our schools.

The BC Teacher Federation is supporting a recommendation that came out of the BC Federation of Labour convention that the federation will continue to work with affiliates and Indigenous educators to educate union members and the general public in BC on the harmful history of the residential school system in Canada.

At this time we also wish to reaffirm our commitment we have made to Lheidli T'enneh and the McLeod Lake Indian Band that we are supportive of the education recommendations that are included in the United Nations Declaration on the rights of Indigenous peoples.

This office attends regularly scheduled governance meetings with the Lheidli T'enneh council, McLeod Lake Indian Band and the school district to find ways to better support the educational needs of First Nations students.

Clearly, the discussions of residential schools and the negative effect they have had on generations of First Nations and Indigenous people need to continue. We are encouraging all members to become better informed on this topic.