Saskatoon Public Schools recognizes September 30 as the National Day for Truth and Reconciliation, a day to honour the Indigenous children who survived residential schools and remember those who didn't. Recognition of the painful history and ongoing impacts of residential schools is a vital component of the reconciliation process.
Students and staff are encouraged to wear orange in recognition of Orange Shirt Day, and there are activities and lessons in the school that foster students' understanding of the impact of residential schools.
The practice of wearing orange began in 2013 in Williams Lake, B.C. at a commemoration event at a local residential school. At the commemoration, a story was told about a young female student named Phyllis who had her brand new orange shirt taken away on her first day of school. The orange shirt is a symbol of the many losses experienced by thousands of students and families due to residential schools.
The phrase "Every Child Matters" is used as part of the movement to recognize the value of every child and for communities to come together in the spirit of reconciliation and hope for future generations.
Click on the links below to learn more about Orange Shirt Day: