Jewish Youth visiting the Auschwitz concentration camp in Poland. (Yossi Zeliger/Flash90) Yossi Zeliger/Flash90
Jewish Youth visiting the Auschwitz concentration camp in Poland.

All students must “feel that they are a significant part of the story being taught,” Education Minister Rafi Peretz told Ynet.

By United With Israel Staff 

The plight of North African Jews living under Nazi occupation will be a compulsory chapter in the history matriculation exam starting from the upcoming school year, reports Ynet.

In addition, the subject of European Jewry during the Holocaust will be reinstated, says the report.

When Shai Piron was Israel’s education minister in 2013 and 2014, he introduced reform which included lowering the profile of matriculation exams so that students would feel less pressure over the prospect that a single test could be so decisive in determining their future education and even career.

Therefore Holocaust studies could be covered through a research project instead.

Still, Piron’s move was interpreted by at least some as lowering the priority of learning about the Holocaust.

Naftali Bennett, who served as education minister from 2015 until earlier this year, decided to reintroduce the Holocaust as a mandatory chapter in the matriculation exam, says Ynet.

Now, the baton has been handed over to Bennett’s successor, Rafi Peretz, who says, as well, that the decision to add the dimension of teaching about North African Jews living under the Nazis was a long time in coming.

“For years, the story of Jews living in Muslim countries under the Nazi occupation has been absent from our discourse,” Peretz told Ynet.

He added that all students must “feel that they are a significant part of the story being taught within the framework of the education system, which reflects all sections of Israeli society.”