Dear colleagues, In the context of the 60th anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz, the Belgian Federal government has recently launched a pilot project, called "Schools for Democracy". It involves an educational programme for children in their last year of primary school and for high-school seniors (in two separate programmes) about the teachings of the Holocaust from the perspective of its contemporary relevance. The aim is to promote the values of respect, citizenship and global responsibility. Each of the two groups (300 primary school pupils, and 300 high-school students) should reflect the diversity of the Belgian school population. In other words, the represented backgrounds of the participating classes should include the two large language communities, the two main educational curricular structures (general and professional), and pluralism in some other dimensions deemed relevant. This setup should reinforce the educational programme's content in terms of tolerance and respect. For both groups, the programme involves three to four encounters of the participating classes, and a day visit to Auschwitz (for the high-school seniors) and to the Malines/Mechelen deportation camp (for the primary school children), accompanied by experienced guides. The Holocaust, it is assumed, can help Belgian children understand how societal intolerance, a lack of individual civic responsibility, and the inertia of other nations have contributed to the decimation of the Jewish and other minorities in Europe. I have been appointed to co-ordinate this project from within the Centre of Equal Opportunities and the Opposition to Racism (www.antiracisme.be). I would be eager to get your feedback and ideas concerning the programme, as detailed above. I am also interested in similar initiatives and in methodologies developed for the design and implementation of such programmes. If the pilot project is successful, it might find a more perennial and broader place in the Belgian educational traject - possibly in an altered form. I thank you in advance for your feedback, Dan Schreiber ======== Global Human Rights Education listserv ======== Send mail intended for the list to <email@example.com>. Archives of the list can be found at: http://www.hrea.org/lists/hr-education/markup/maillist.php If you have problems (un)subscribing, contact <firstname.lastname@example.org>. **You are welcome to reprint, copy, archive, quote or re-post this item, but please retain the original and listserv source.
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