The Indian Boarding Schools (USA) / Native Residential schools (Canada) opened in America in 1860 and 1880 in Canada. The stated goal was to assimilate Indigenous children and force them to adopt Christianity: “to kill the Indian to save the man,” according to Colonel Richard Henry Pratt, Headmaster of the Carlisle Indian School. The children were treated brutally, and subjected to physical and sexual abuse, and the mortality rate was unusually high. For example the Canadian government stated that 150,000 Indigenous children attended the schools, and in 2014 the Residential School Truth and Reconciliation commission reported that 50,000 students had gone missing while residing at the schools. In 2014 it was reported that an undisclosed number of bodies were discovered in 31 mass graves that were discovered on the grounds of former Native Residential Schools. The situation was similar for Indian Boarding Schools in America.
“Because they were removed from their families, many students grew up without experiencing a nurturing family life and without the knowledge and skills to raise their own families. The devastating effects of the residential schools are far-reaching and continue to have significant impact on Aboriginal communities. Because the government’s and the churches’ intent was to eradicate all aspects of Aboriginal culture in these young people and interrupt its transmission from one generation to the next, the residential school system is commonly considered a form of cultural genocide.”
-– Indigenous Foundations, the University of British Columbia
Canada, where are the 50,000 missing children from 80 Indian residential schools? | sinhalanet.net
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