The Kids of Jack Hulland Elementary: Yukon Child and Youth Advocate Podcast (School Safety)

Warning: This multi-part series deals with the physical abuse of vulnerable children in the public school system. If you or someone you love is experiencing trauma-related symptoms from physical abuse, please seek help. Resources in Canada can be found here: For children, Kids Help Phone: Call 1-800-668-6868 (toll-free) or text CONNECT to 686868.

Why don’t children go to school in the Yukon?

Through its individual advocacy work, the Yukon Child and Youth Advocate Office (YCAO) found that an astonishing number of Yukon children rarely attended school. The Office embarked on a systemic review of the reasons why children were not going to school, releasing the final report on June 1, 2021.

In the report (p. 13), the YCAO documented the two previous reports from the Auditor General, continuing to point out that the Department of Education did not know if its programs met the needs of students in the Territory.

Recently, the YCAO began a podcast series about the report, organized around the obstacles and barriers to school attendance in the Yukon, as outlined on page 8 of the report (see below).

For the purpose of this series on the Kids of Jack Hulland Elementary, I will focus on “Safety in Schools”, but I encourage you to listen to the entire podcast series, and read the Attendance Report to hear what other Yukon children and youth are saying about their experiences in Yukon Schools.

Episode 2: Safety in Schools outlines a key theme in the Attendance Review report. [Note: since the attendance review, there have been three further systemic reviews announced on aspects of safety in schools in the Yukon: Sexualized Assault, Restraints and Seclusion, and Racism in Schools]

While the initial attendance report findings focused on child safety due to bullying and discrimination, since 2021, numerous other student safety issues have emerged. While still addressing these original findings, the work of the YCAO has shifted to include harm toward children by educators. The comprehensive systemic review of how the Department of Education responded to allegations of sexualized assault by an educator in a Yukon school has been completed.

As well, the systemic review of allegations of assault and confinement at Jack Hulland Elementary has been launched, and just this week, the review of systemic racism in schools was announced.

There have been several very public “scandals” regarding students being harmed by educators in the Yukon. The YCAO has had to work very closely with victms and their families to find services and guidance to move forward, as well as to ensure that the voice of the child is heard (advocacy), and that proper reporting is carried out.

There are four areas of focus around child safety: reporting, access to therapeutic supports, communication and accountability, and access to appropriate school programs

“Children have the RIGHT to recover from harm.”

Julia Milnes, Deputy Child & Youth Advocate, Yukon

For further details on the work of the YCAO in advocating for safer Yukon public schools, feel free to listen to the podcast, and follow the YCAO YouTube channel for further episodes.

Featured image: YCAO Attendance Review Report Cover 2021 (link below)

Page 12 of the YCAO Review entitled "Why We Did This Review"

Page 12 of the Attendance Review Report

The Kids of Jack Hulland Elementary is a compilation of stories around the Inappropriate Use of Force on vulnerable children over many years at a public school in Whitehorse, Yukon. This is a complex narrative about the violation of the rights of children in a public school, where all children should thrive. Through understanding the circumstances that led to and supported child abuse, we can all ensure this never happens again.


Review on School Attendance in the Yukon: What is, What Could Be – YCAO 2021:

YCAO podcast series: Introduction –

YCAO podcast series: Episode 3 – Culture and Belonging

Class Action Lawsuit: Were you (or someone you know) a student at Jack Hulland Elementary School in Whitehorse, Yukon during the years 2007 to 2022? You may be entitled to compensation as part of a class action lawsuit against the Yukon Department of Education. Please contact Tucker-Carruthers Yukon Law for more information. Website: or contact Heather Jordan, Paralegal at 867-667-2099 or email

Who I Am: My name is Donna Miller Fry. I was Superintendent of Schools in Whitehorse, Yukon when I became aware that prior to my arrival, children at Jack Hulland Elementary School were being restrained and secluded as a method of discipline – for years. I (and others) reported this to the RCMP on November 29, 2021. Since then, the Department of Education has admitted the inappropriate use of restraints and seclusion. The victims have resorted to legal action to obtain professional support in addressing the impacts of trauma. This can never happen again in the public school system. By telling this story, I hope to empower education leaders to ensure vulnerable children are never again the victims of abuse in the very place that should be dedicated to their flourishing.

The Kids of Jack Hulland Elementary

  1. Introduction
  2. Timeline Part 1 (Class Action Lawsuit)
  3. Timeline Part 2 (RCMP)
  4. Section 43 of the Criminal Code of Canada
  5. The Statement of Claim
  6. The Yukon Child and Youth Advocate’s Office
  7. The [Missing] Kids of Jack Hulland Elementary
  8. Week 1 Summary
  9. The Federal NDP Attempt to Repeal Section 43 of the Criminal Code of Canada (Bill C-273)
  10. UPDATE: Bill C-273
  11. UPDATE: Supreme Court of Yukon Decision March 27, 2024
  12. UPDATE: Yukon Child and Youth Advocate’s Office PODCAST
  13. No Pain, No Shame, No Blame (American Academy of Paediatrics)
  14. Senator Stan Kutcher and Bill S-251 to Repeal Section 43
  15. Truth and Reconciliation Call to Action 6
  16. The Rights of Children
  17. The Public Education System in the Yukon
  18. Ronald Morrish – Discipline that Harms
  19. Ethical Practice and the Teaching Profession
  20. Recap and FAQ
  21. Childhood Trauma – ACES
  22. The long-term impact of physical abuse of children
  23. What we know about corporal punishment of children

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