It’s Métis Nation Awareness Month and students across the Lloydminster Public School Division have been learning more about Métis history and heritage.
Elder Shirley Gervias visited with kids at Queen Elizabeth School on Wednesday. She shared about the history of the Métis flag which predates the Maple Leaf by some 150 years.
Students like grade six Ashlyn Janki said the visit deepened her awareness.
“After she told us about it, I felt like I knew a lot more.”
The teaching delved into the service of Métis war veterans and the role of Gervais’ great-great-grandfather, Cyprian Morin (1834-1924), who donated land in Meadow Lake for the building of a church in 1908, and whose name is on the St. Cyprian Cemetery in Meadow Lake.
Gervais says Morin was chairman of the school board for several years, however, he could not read or write.
“In his school board proposals, he said the children have to go to school and they have to go to church, as he helped build a church. All his proposals and recommendations were marked with an “X” and underneath someone would write his name,” says Gervais.
The Elder has been going to the schools for about five years. She says Métis people like to share. She talks about the meaning of their flag, and the sash, and shares several stories of Métis resilience with the students.