"Hearing one person tell their story gave a completely different perspective to what happened, as it wasn't about statistics or about a nation as a whole, but one person who lost his family and home." ~O. Avery (student)

Archive - Jun 21, 2013

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House Republicans Vote Down Boyle Amendment Requiring Holocaust Education

Harrisburg, June 19th – An amendment by state Rep. Brendan F. Boyle that would have required Pennsylvania schools to teach the Holocaust and other examples of genocide as part of their curriculum was defeated today as the Pennsylvania House, led by the Republican majority, voted down his amendment to HB1424 by a split 99-99 vote. Instead, what passed was weaker legislation which only gave limited direction to Pennsylvania schools that voluntarily choose to teach the subject. According to the Task Force for International Cooperation on Holocaust Education, Remembrance, and Research, five states have enacted laws requiring the teaching of the Holocaust in schools: California, Florida, Illinois, New Jersey and New York.

“The failure of the legislature to pass my amendment to require Pennsylvania public schools to teach the history of the Holocaust and other acts of genocide is another example of misplaced priorities. The histories of these events cannot be ignored. If Pennsylvania students are truly to grow into tolerant and worldly citizens equipped with the knowledge and education to prevent future atrocities they must be aware of our human history.” Boyle said. “This nation has always been proud of our ability to lead with a firm understand of world events. As more and more Holocaust survivors pass away we must ensure that their stories and voices remain strong in the mind of Pennsylvania’s students. Knowing our history is the only way to ensure that the mistakes of our past are never repeated.”