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Saturday, February 1, 2014

Pennsylvania union fights bill requiring kids to learn about the Holocaust, as 17-y/o female student says 'Teaching of genocides needs to change'.

HARRISBURG, Pa. – The Pennsylvania State Education Association is opposed to a proposal that would require public school students in the Keystone State to learn about the Holocaust.

HitlerDemocratic State Rep. Brendan Boyle authored the bill, saying, “Learning about the mistakes of our human history makes it less likely that we will repeat them,” according to a news release on his website.
He added, “As more of the Holocaust’s survivors pass away we need to make sure that their stories and experiences live on.  We owe it to them. We owe it to each other. We owe it to our students.”
House Bill 176 reads, “Beginning with school year 2015-2016, each public school student shall receive mandatory instruction in the Holocaust, genocide and human rights violations from grade six through grade twelve.”
It would require schools to teach about “the history of the Holocaust, including the Third Reich dictatorship, concentration camp system, persecution of Jews and non-Jews, Jewish and non-Jewish resistance and post-World War II trials.”
Genocide, human rights violations and “the abridgement of civil rights” would be included topics, as well.
This is all apparently too much for the teachers union, which, at the same time, conveniently provides numerous labor history lesson plans and materials on its website.

“We certainly recognize the value of Holocaust-related education, but the move to make this a mandate has moved our position,” said association spokesman David Broderic, according to thePhiladelphia Inquirer.
So the legislature has no right to “mandate” that certain topic be taught in schools? Should every topic taught in every classroom be handpicked by the teacher? Don’t the taxpayers – through our elected representatives – deserve some say about what’s in the curriculum?

‘Teaching of genocides needs to change’

ELLIE MULLAN, aged 17 
ASK most people what the most important statistic is about genocides and the likely answer will be that six million Jewish people were murdered during the Holocaust.
I am thankful to live in a society where virtually everyone is aware of, and hates, what was inflicted on members of the Jewish religion.
However, when writing this article, I did some research about the number of genocides which have occurred throughout history.
The answer surprised and astonished me. Hundreds of events, most of which I have never heard of, filled my screen.
Dating from the 1490s to the present day, the systematic destruction of national, ethnic, racial or religious groups has permeated history.
This got me thinking – am I just the odd one out, or should young people (or people in general) have more awareness of these horrific events?
Being a history student, I felt ashamed and embarrassed that I did not have any knowledge of most of these genocides.

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