26 September 2023

Minister directive for Holocaust lessons

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The Minister for Education has directed the Department of Education and Training to ensure all Year 9 and 10 public school students are taught about the Holocaust.

The Minister, James Merlino said the direction was intended to tackle rising anti-Semitism, racism and prejudice in schools and in the broader society.

“While the Holocaust is in the current Victorian curriculum, it is not taught in all schools, and when it is, it is often not taught as well as it could be,” Mr Merlino said.

“It concerns me that if asked, most kids today wouldn’t be able to explain what the Holocaust was,” he said.

“Anti-Semitism is on the rise around the globe and sadly we are not immune in our own Victorian community.”

Mr Merlino also announced that new and refreshed teaching and learning resources for Holocaust education would be developed in partnership with the Victorian Jewish community and Gandel Philanthropy.

He said the Government would work with Victorian Jewish organisations, and alumni of the Gandel Holocaust Studies Program for Australian Educators, to review existing resources to ensure they were up to date and fit for purpose.

“It is vital that each generation understands the horror of the Holocaust to ensure it can never be repeated and to educate the community on the damage caused by anti-Semitism, racism and prejudice,” he said.

“This is about using this terrible historical event to talk to students and educate them about the broader issues of racism and prejudice in our society,” Mr Merlino said.

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