CALLS TO REMOVE SIR JOHN A. MACDONALD'S NAME FROM SCHOOLS THAT BEAR HIS NAME
Aug 24, 2017
By Bob Komsic
While Premier Kathleen Wynne does not doubt that the Elementary Teachers Federation of Ontario (ETFO) is coming from a good place, she believes it’s missed the mark.
A motion passed recently at the ETFO’s annual meeting calls on all school districts in Ontario to rename schools and buildings named after Canada’s first prime minister.
The request comes because of what the elementary teachers’ group calls his role as the ”architect of genocide against Indigenous Peoples,” since he was prime minister during the time the federal government approved the first residential schools in Canada.
Premier Wynne says while decisions about naming schools belong to school boards, she does not believe his name should be removed.
”But Sir John A MacDonald was far from perfect — certainly his decision to open residential schools was among the most problematic in our history.
The more important question we should be asking ourselves as we move forward is how do we enact meaningful reconciliation with our indigenous peoples?
We need to teach our children the full history of this country — including colonialism, our indigenous peoples and their history and about what our founders did to create Canada and make it the country it is today.
We need to understand our history, the good along with the bad, so we can move forward in an era of mutual respect and understanding with our indigenous peoples.”