We have seen that Canada issued periodic updates of its decisions regarding applications to add institutions to the Indian Residential Schools Settlement Agreement (IRSSA) under Article 12.
The last available update (March 28, 2013) concerns 1,502 institutions. The original IRSSA included 104 (6.9%) of these institutions;1Canada recognized St. Joseph’s (Fort Resolution, Northwest Territories) as an Indian Residential School for 1903-1957; thereafter, Canada deemed St. Joseph’s to have been operated by a religious organization. another 8 (0.5%) institutions were added to the IRSSA under Article 12.
As of March 28, 2013, Canada was refusing to recognize 247 (16.4%) institutions as Indian Residential Schools due to “Insufficient Information”. Canada would add none of these institutions to the IRSSA by the time the applications process under Article 12 was closed in July 2015. Table 1 presents the sufficiency/insufficiency of information about an institution by the province/territory in which the institution was located. There was no statistically significant association between the two variables, Χ12=19.8, p=0.07.2For this analysis, we discard applications connected to 28 institutions whose locations were unknown and 9 institutions located outside Canada. Within this sample, the overall rate of information insufficiency decreased slightly to 15% (220/1465).
|Newfoundland and Labrador||17||9||26|
|Prince Edward Island||4||0||4|
As of March 28, 2013, the federal government indicated there was sufficient information for it to decide against adding 1,133 institutions in Canada to the IRSSA.3From our intitial list of 1,502 institutions, we arrive at this figure of 1,133 by discarding institutions (1) already included in the original IRSSa; (2) added to the IRSSA under Article 12; (3) located outside Canada; and/or (4) about which there was insufficient information.
Canada ruled nearly three-quarters (813/1133 or 71.8%) of these institutions ineligible because the operator was not the federal government. Nearly a third (356/1133 or 31.4%) of these institutions were ruled ineligible because the program was not a residential school. A few institutions (36/1133 or 3.2%) were ruled ineligible because of both their operator and program.
Table 2 presents the operator(s) of institutions that Canada ruled ineligible for addition to the IRSSA under Article 12.4Some institutions were operated jointly, for example, by both the province/territory and a religious organization.
|No Federal Involvement||5|
Table 3 presents the programs of institutions that Canada ruled ineligible for addition to the IRSSA under Article 12.
|Other (e.g. “No Residence Identified”||25|
The IRSSA excluded Indian Residential Schools operated by provincial/territorial governments. Canada’s update (March 28, 2013) of applications under Article 12 included 462 provincially/territorially-operated institutions whose programs were left unclassified.5The provincial/territorial government partnered with a religious organization to operate 31 (6.7%) of these institutions. One institution was operated jointly by a provincial/territorial government, a religious organization, and a band; one institution was operated jointly by a provincial/territorial government and a private organization.
Our list of these provincially/territorially-operated institutions includes many institutions with names that refer simply to a “school” of some sort, with terms like “elementary”, “junior high”, “high” and “secondary”. Fifteen institutions have names that suggest a live-in progam, with terms like “residence”, “residential”, “pensionnat” and “hostel”. Another fifteen institutions have names that suggest a live-in program for children and youth who ran afoul of the law, with terms like “training” and “correctional”.
The exact nature and role played by these 462 provincially/territorially-operated institutions in the lives of Indigenous children and families need further investigation.
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