Racism, poor attendance connected in Alberta schools

October 21, 2020

A study of student absences in Alberta’s Rocky View School district has reported that while Indigenous students with poor attendance in off-reserve schools show signs of experiencing racism, educators attribute the issues students face to the legacy of residential schools. One parent in the study said that “this assumption by educators was demeaning and served only to delegate the issues of contemporary racism into the background.” The article states that “despite educators not recognizing [racism] as a barrier, daily experiences of racism and a lack of cultural understandings are contributing to the poor attendance of on-reserve students.” It concludes by saying that more research needs to be done on how student experiences of racism impact attendance patterns, and how systemic racism and oppression remains within educational policies, curriculum and teaching, and the classroom. The Conversation (AB)