Interior Department Releases Report Detailing Abuse Of Tribal Children In Boarding Schools

The federal government is acknowledging the mistreatment of tribal children in Indian boarding schools. For over 150 years, the government took many native American children from their homes, forcing them to assimilate. 76 of the schools were in Oklahoma.

Wednesday, May 11th 2022, 9:40 pm



The federal government is acknowledging the mistreatment of tribal children in Indian boarding schools.

For over 150 years, the government took many native American children from their homes, forcing them to assimilate. 76 of the schools were in Oklahoma.

This systematic abuse - sometimes whipping, sometimes starvation - isn't news to many tribal citizens - whose grandparents may have been among the thousands taken away from their parents and forced into boarding schools.

The report summarizes a nearly two-century-long practice that ended only 50 years ago.

In the schools, tribal children were given new names and identities. According to the report, they were punished - sometimes brutally - for speaking their native languages.

The report identified 408 schools like this across the nation. Oklahoma had 76, more than any other state by far.

Secretary of the Interior Deb Haaland said the department worked to uncover the US's troubling past with tribal boarding schools after more than 200 bodies were found in an unmarked gravesite near a similarly-run boarding school in Canada last year.

"For more than a century, tens of thousands of indigenous children were taken from their communities and forced into boarding schools run by the US government," she said.

The report also identifies 53 burial sites, and estimates there could be thousands of children who died under the care of the federal government.

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