(Source, CBC, Sept. 1, 2020): The federal government is today formally recognizing one of the darkest chapters in Canadian history as an event of national significance and is designating two former residential schools as national historic sites. Minister of Environment and Climate Change Jonathan Wilkinson, who is responsible for Parks Canada, will officially announce today the federal government is taking steps to mark the history of the residential school system. Wilkinson will designate two former residential schools as national historic sites: Portage La Prairie Residential School in Manitoba and Shubenacadie Residential School in Nova Scotia.
The building that housed the former Portage La Prairie Residential School in Manitoba is still standing. Long Plain First Nation acquired it in 1981. Once it’s declared a national historic site, said Chief Dennis Meeches, the First Nation hopes to turn the building into a residential school museum, library and memorial garden.
Right now, there’s nothing at the site of the former Shubenacadie Residential School to indicate what it used to be. A plastics factory now stands in its place.