Some Saskatchewan parents are upset with the province’s newly introduced Indigenous curriculum after their previously non-Indigenous children returned home from school as First Nations, Métis and Inuit people.
“I’m all for having our children learn about this country’s history but could my daughter at least have been changed into a girl her own age?” said Melissa Mitchell, a Regina mother whose 11-year-old daughter Liz returned home as an 87-year-old Inuk Elder named Elisapie Kabloona.
Schools in the province began teaching treaty education and other Indigenous-themed content this year, in response to calls to action issued by the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada.
But it hasn’t been without controversy.
“This is just PC culture run amok,” said another outraged parent, Harold Logan, whose 8-year-old son Shane is now a 37-year-old Anishinaabe man named Peter Delorme.
“My son used to love playing soccer, now all he wants to do is go elk hunting.”
In an email, a representative from the province’s ministry of education said that they have already spoken to the affected families and have vowed to get to the bottom of the incidents.
However, a spokesperson from the Saskatchewan Federation of Teachers was unapologetic.
“While we certainly didn’t expect as dramatic a change as some families may have experienced, we must all recognize that reconciliation won’t become a reality in this country without breaking some eggs,” said Martha Nelson.
It’s unclear how many children have been changed into Indigenous Peoples, but government officials have called the syndrome Sudden Indigenous Child Conversions and are worried it could soon spread to other provinces.