Statue of Egerton Ryerson on university campus toppled

ryerson

 A much-maligned statue of Egerton Ryerson was toppled in Toronto on Sunday.

The statue, prominently displayed on the campus of Ryerson University, has come under renewed scrutiny after the discovery in Kamloops, B.C., of what are believed to be the remains of 215 Indigenous children at a former residential school.

Ryerson is credited as one of the architects of Canada's residential school system.

Toronto Police Const. Alex Li says officers are investigating the statue's toppling.

He says a protest travelled from the provincial legislature to the Ryerson campus on Sunday afternoon.

The on-campus statue of Ryerson -- and the university's relationship with its namesake -- has long been controversial.

In 2010, the school published a statement saying that while Ryerson did not implement or oversee residential schools, his beliefs “influenced, in part, the establishment of what became the Indian Residential School system.”

Eight years later, the school added a plaque beside the statue.

It reads, in part, “As Chief Superintendent of Education, Ryerson's recommendations were instrumental in the design and implementation of the Indian Residential School System.”

Ryerson was first named to the post in 1844 and held it until his retirement in 1876, nine years after Confederation.

--with files from CTV News--