Across Canada, National Aboriginal Day is recognized annually on June 21. This date was chosen because of the cultural significance of the summer solstice, the first day of summer and longest day of the year, and because many Indigenous communities mark this day as a time to celebrate their heritage. Setting aside a day to acknowledge National Aboriginal Day is part of the wider recognition of the founding place of Indigenous peoples within the fabric of Canada.
The 2015-2020 Strategic Plan  includes Achieving Excellence & Equity as a priority, with a supporting goal to provide programs and services to help each student achieve success. Providing students with opportunities to gain knowledge and understanding of First Nation, Métis and Inuit culture, tradition and perspectives are part of the Pathways goal in the Board Improvement Plan for Student Achievement and Well-Being (BIPSAW).
The National Centre for Truth and Reconciliation states that Education is the key to reconciliation but only a true and complete experience in education can pave the path to relationships built on mutual respect and peaceful co-existence between Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal classmates, neighbours and community members in this country.
At HPEDSB, we are committed to supporting educators and students to address social justice and reconciliation for students for the possibility of today & tomorrow.
Some examples of system-level initiatives that support this work include the following:
- 61 sections of Indigenous Studies at secondary schools
- Orange Shirt Day—Every Child Matters recognized on September 30
- Ignite the Fire Student Symposium, an event attended by 230+ secondary school students
- Professional learning sessions for teachers and school administrators
- Provincial Indigenous Leads Gathering hosted by HPEDSB with over 150 participants from 71 Ontario school boards
Please join in recognizing National Aboriginal Day on Wednesday, June 21, 2017.
For more information, contact:
Kerry Donnell, Communications Officer, 613-966-1170 or 1 800 267-4350, extension 2354, firstname.lastname@example.org