BALTIMORE, MD—Maryland State Department of Education officials announced on Wednesday that they intend to adopt a number of changes to enhance and expand required Holocaust instruction in the state’s public schools.
The planned changes include requiring Holocaust instruction within the state’s new 4th and 5th grade social studies framework, teaching about the roots of Antisemitism, and strengthening the required Holocaust instruction in both high school U.S. history and high school modern world history.
Dr. Karen B. Salmon, Superintendent of Schools, also pledged to work with the state’s 24 local school systems to ensure that professional learning opportunities are created so teachers have the tools necessary to teach the Holocaust with confidence.
“We strongly believe there is a need to enhance Holocaust education in our state, so that all children learn about this horrific event and ensure it never happens again,” Dr. Salmon said. “We see the changes that we are making as a substantive improvement over the current objectives and frameworks.”
Dr. Salmon announced the changes in response to concerns about Maryland’s Holocaust education requirements raised earlier this year by members of the General Assembly, the Baltimore Jewish Council, and the Jewish Community Relations Council of Greater Washington.