SYDNEY (JTA) — Teaching the Holocaust will be mandatory in schools across Australia.
The Holocaust will be taught in all states and territories to students in years 9 and 10, or aged 14 to 16, as a major world event of World War II, a spokesman for the Australian Curriculum, Assessment and Reporting Authority said last week.
The state of New South Wales will be the first to introduce the lesson, beginning in 2014, with the other states and territories to follow.
The move follows a submission first lodged by the Executive Council of Australian Jewry in 2010 for the framework of the new national curriculum.
“We have found that many schools opt to teach the Holocaust, whether in the city or in regional areas, so there is definitely an active awareness among Australian educators of its importance,” said Vic Alhadeff, chief executive officer of the New South Wales Jewish Board of Deputies. “This momentous decision vindicates and endorses that awareness and is warmly welcomed.
“The Holocaust stands as the ultimate warning to mankind of where racial hatred can lead, and we congratulate our education authorities on this great decision and for their vision and foresight,” he added.