Davin School REGINA – School trustees in Regina have voted to change the name of a school over concern that it honours a man who was a driving force behind the residential school system in Canada.
The Davin School is to be renamed Crescents School.
Davin School was named after Nicholas Davin, an MP who submitted a report to the federal government in 1879 called the "Report on Industrial Schools for Indians and Half-Breeds."
He had been appointed by Ottawa to investigate American industrial schools for Indigenous children, and recommended similar schools be set up in Canada.
The Regina Public School Board held an online public consultation on the school name in November after receiving complaints about Davin’s controversial past.
The board received more than 1,000 responses and said half were in favour of the change, the other half wanted to maintain the status quo.
Five trustees voted in favour of the change on Tuesday. One voted against, and one abstained.
Thousands of children died in residential schools and were buried in unmarked graves. Others were sexually and physically abused, and returned to their communities alienated from their culture.
The Truth and Reconciliation Commission said in its final report that Davin’s report was flawed.
"He believed the focus had to be on raising the children away from the parents, and that ‘if anything is to be done with the Indian, we must catch him very young," the commission wrote.
"Once caught, they were to be ‘kept constantly within the circle of civilized conditions,’ which, in his opinion, required boarding schools."
Davin also wrote that there was no need to provide First Nations with any input into the sorts of schools that were established.
Davin School opened in 1929 and has about 250 children from pre-kindergarten to Grade 8.
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