By Kevin Deutsch
Rep. Ted Deutch is speaking out about the importance of Holocaust education in schools after teachers in Texas were told to teach “opposing views” of the Nazi genocide during a training session.
An administrator for the Carroll Independent School District in Southlake, Texas, guided teachers during a training session on complying with a new state law, HB3979, which aims to limit teaching about race.
The law states that a teacher may not be compelled to talk to students about “a particular current event or widely debated and currently controversial issue of public policy or social affairs.”
“Just try to remember the concepts of 3979,” Gina Peddy, executive director of curriculum and instruction for the district, is heard saying on a recording of the session. “And make sure that if you have a book on the Holocaust, that you have one that has opposing, that has other perspectives.”
The district’s superintendent has since apologized for the remarks.
“When it comes to learning the lessons of the Holocaust, there is no room for ‘opposing views’ that advance exactly the type of hate that Holocaust education is meant to combat,” Deutch, who represents Coral Springs and Parkland, said in a joint statement with Rep. Chris Smith, a New Jersey Republican.
“Regardless of what form antisemitism takes, which state or which side of the political spectrum it stems from, we are committed to responding with strength and urgency,” said the congressmen, who are co-chairs of the House Bipartisan Task Force for Combating Antisemitism. “We must use every tool we have to push back against rising antisemitism and Holocaust denial in our country, and education is a key tool to eliminating the root causes of antisemitism and anti-Semitic violence.”
“When we teach about the atrocities committed by the Nazis and the horrors of the Holocaust, it is a step toward giving real and powerful meaning to ‘never again.’”
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- Kevin Deutsch is an award-winning crime journalist and author. A graduate of Florida International University, Kevin has worked on staff at The Miami Herald, New York Daily News, and The Palm Beach Post.
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