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FRA and Yad Vashem Launch Educators' Toolkit

9 November 2011

Today, FRA and Yad Vashem launched a new educational initiative: the Toolkit on the Holocaust and Human Rights Education in the EU. Three years ago, on 9 November 2008, marking 70 years since the Kristallnacht Pogrom, the EU Agency for Fundamental Rights (FRA) and Yad Vashem initiated an educational project to create an online pedagogical tool - a Toolkit on the Holocaust and Human Rights Education.

The toolkit was developed in response to a real educational gap, expressed by both educators and students. By examining the connections between Holocaust and human rights education, the toolkit provides methodological approaches for teaching these topics and includes useful content for teaching.

The toolkit is a practical online guide for educators who wish to develop teaching projects that link the Holocaust and the protection of human rights. Projects and activities in the toolkit combine teaching history lessons, developing empathy with the victims, connecting the knowledge of the Holocaust with that of human rights, deriving implications for today’s world, and empowering students to respect human rights. Sample content ranges from Austrian high school students learning about the antisemitic portrayal of Jews in the Nazi propaganda paper Der Stürmer to Slovenian middle school students learning about the Holocaust as a case study in an effort to become active participants in the process of learning about human rights. Additionally, the toolkit contains 11 posters created by design students from Europe and abroad as part of a prestigious international competition sponsored by the International Task Force for Holocaust Education, Remembrance and Research, to commemorate the Holocaust. These projects aim to inspire teachers across the EU to use the toolkit as a basis for exploring and discussing the connections between the Holocaust and human rights and values.

Yad Vashem, the Holocaust education and research center in Jerusalem established in 1953 by the Israeli Parliament, is dedicated to Holocaust education, remembrance, documentation and research. For approximately twenty years, Yad Vashem's International School for Holocaust Studies (ISHS) has been designing age-appropriate, interdisciplinary tools and techniques to teach about antisemitism and the Holocaust.

The European Union Agency for Fundamental Rights (FRA) is the EU’s independent expert body on fundamental rights. Since 2007, it has been advising decision-makers in the EU on legal and practical rights issues, based on its own research data. The FRA also promotes awareness of fundamental rights in the EU and its Member States and works closely with civil society organisations. Together with its partners, the Agency is helping to make fundamental rights a reality for everyone in the EU.