TVDSB to rename Ryerson PS; other school names to be reviewed

Posted On Thursday June 24, 2021

Trustees unanimously supported changing the name of Ryerson Public School, as well as a broad review of all schools named after individuals, to ensure they reflect the Board’s commitment to human rights, equity and inclusive learning environments.

A motion by Trustee Corrine Rahman called for renaming 109-year-old Ryerson Public School, named after Egerton Ryerson, considered the architect of Ontario’s public education system in the 1840s. 

However, Ryerson was a key influence on the creation of the residential school system for Indigenous children.

“The overriding context for changing the name of this school relates to the historical oppression of Indigenous people in Canada, specifically the forced residential school attendance by Indigenous children,” said Trustee Rahman.

“As society changes, we must also be prepared to make changes as a school board that ensure our schools are safe and welcoming places for all our students.”

A motion by Trustee Sean Hunt called for a broad review of all TVDSB schools, facilities and learning environments that have been named after individuals to ensure they reflect the diversity of Thames Valley students and staff and the Board’s commitment to promote human rights, equity and inclusive learning environments.

“The discovery of children’s bodies found at the former Kamloops residential school may have been a revelation for many Canadians, but not for Indigenous people,” said Trustee Hunt. 

“I don’t think we have understood the gravity – until now – of what it means to have our schools named after individuals who contributed to the establishment of the residential school system.” 

Indigenous Trustee Carol Antone, who seconded Trustee Hunt’s motion, said: “On behalf of First Nations and Indigenous people, this change is long overdue.”

The Board’s public process for renaming schools encourages community members to submit suggestions to replace the Ryerson name. More details will be posted soon on TVDSB’s website at

A comprehensive report on all schools named after individuals will be presented to the Board in May 2022.

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