Education Ministry instructs schools to discuss violence of anti-racism protests
By HAYAH GOLDLIST-EICHLER
Michal Cohen, Director-General of the Education Ministry, directed educational institutions to discuss the violent events that occurred over the past few days at the demonstrations held in Jerusalem and Tel Aviv. The letter, sent out Monday morning, contained links to lesson plans for all grades, from kindergarten through to high school.The letter, which spoke about "deep revelations of racism, incitement, and reckless violence," also spoke of the obligation that rests on the shoulders of the education ministry to mend "the unacceptable social ills and afflictions and to implant the sacred values – protection of human dignity and freedom, love for mankind, and mutual responsibility."The lesson plans ranged according to age. The kindergarten lesson plan included a general emphasis on "we are all equal and different" and conflict resolution through conversation and not violence. The high school lesson plan includes group discussions about newspaper articles detailing some of the situations the Ethiopian-Israeli community has been dealt with, such as being told not to donate blood to Magen David Adom, as their blood would not be used.The lessons are intended to show the harms of racism and violence. The letter from Cohen tells educational staff that classroom talks should "emphasize the severe and destructive implications that these phenomena have on society and the state."The letter concludes: "The Education Ministry will continue to pursue the dissemination of the values of mutual responsibility, which has the ability to give and contribute, and in doing so it will continue to encourage students to volunteer and contribute to the community."
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