Orange Shirt Day - Monday Sept. 30th

posted Sep 26, 2019, 9:09 AM by Tania Gamache   [ updated Sep 26, 2019, 9:13 AM ]

Dear Parents/Guardians,

September 30th marks Orange Shirt Day in Canada.  Orange Shirt Day is an initiative “to commemorate the residential school experience, to witness and honour the healing journey of the survivors and their families, and to commit to the ongoing process of reconciliation.”

The origin of Orange Shirt Day is based on Phyllis Webstad’s story of having her new orange shirt that her grandmother bought her taken away on her first day at Residential School. It was replaced by the school uniform.  read Phyllis Webstad’s story

Our students will be learning about the Indian Residential School system in Canada and about reconciliation through participating in this day. The Residential School System was an attempt to assimilate Indigenous children into Euro-Canadian society and to educate them in an environment that removed them from their families and their culture.  The Truth and Reconciliation Commission defines reconciliation as “an ongoing process of establishing and maintaining respectful relationships.” First Nations educator Pamela Toulouse says, “Truth and reconciliation are even more necessary in a world that is challenged and for our children and youth who have inherited it.”

Spirit Box Collection for Orange Shirt Day - September 30th, 2019

To commemorate Orange Shirt Day, the OCSB is assisting with the Spirit Box Collection for the Wabano Center for Aboriginal Health in Vanier.  The Spirit Box initiative was started by Bryan Delaney of Delaney Law Firm in Ottawa. It is his goal for this initiative to go nationwide and help other Indigenous Communities in Canada. On September 30th, we are encouraging a donation of a quarter (25 cents) from each student and staff member in our school communities.  These donations will be placed into the Spirit Box collection boxes at each school and the total collection will be presented to the Wabano Center for Aboriginal Health.

The activities for Orange Shirt Day are developed to provide age-appropriate educational instruction about Residential Schools and are intended to meet our education Calls to Action from the Truth and Reconciliation Commission.  Students are invited to wear an orange shirt to participate in the day.

For further information about Orange Shirt Day, you can check out this website:  

With thanks,

Your leadership team, Ms. Gotell and Mrs. Gamache