215 Hours of Remembrance

215 Hours of Remembrance
Posted on 05/30/2021
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Medicine Hat, AB (May 31, 2021): This weekend we learned that the Tk'emlúps te Secwépemc Band found a mass grave on the grounds of the Kamloops Indian Residential School, where the remains of 215 children were discovered. No markers were found. No signs of respect or remembrance were present. Medicine Hat Public School Division schools will observe 215 hours of remembrance and a moment of silence to honour the remains of the 215 children discovered.

Darrell Willier, MHPSD’s First Nations, Metis, and Inuit Education Coordinator commented on this news, “215 lost children have been found and they will finally be able to go home. Our thoughts and prayers are with the families as they begin to process the magnitude of this life altering experience that started decades ago. An unfortunate part of the legacy of Canada's Residential School history is that there are more burial sites to be found.”

Beginning at 8:00 a.m. tomorrow morning, all flags at MHPSD schools and offices will be flown at half-mast. They will remain there for 215 hours, one hour for every child whose remains were discovered on the grounds of the Kamloops Indian Residential School. In addition, all schools will stop and observe a moment of silence at 2:15 p.m. in remembrance of the lost children. There are some individuals that may choose to wear orange shirts and we encourage all forms of remembrance to honour the 215 lives lost.

We understand that the topic of residential schools and their impact on the Indigenous peoples of Canada is difficult and staff will approach it through age appropriate discussions for the duration of our 215 hours of remembrance. These lessons, part of our work to meet the goals of Truth and Reconciliation, will remain cardinal goals of our system.

In upper elementary, teachers will use the following resources to start important discussions in their classrooms.


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