Institute of Education - Holocaust teachers study

November 20, 2008

The first large-scale national survey of how the Holocaust is taught in English secondary schools has been launched by Stuart Foster, reader in history in education and director of the project at the Institute of Education, University of London. Dr Foster said that while the Holocaust is a compulsory part of the national curriculum, little is known about teachers' attitudes towards, and perceptions of, it. Existing small-scale research suggests that many feel ill equipped to handle such a difficult and emotive topic. The researchers hope to find answers to questions such as: why do teachers choose to teach about the Holocaust?; how much time do they devote to it?; are there reasons why a teacher may hesitate to teach the subject?; does the background of the students affect this decision in any way? The survey is part of a three-year, £1.5 million project funded by the Department for Children, Schools and Families and the charitable Pears Foundation, with support from the Holocaust Educational Trust.

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