Thursday, April 5, 2007

UK Schools avoid teaching "controversial" topics [continued]

As I noted in a post earlier this week, a report, funded by the UK Department for Education and Skills, found that some teachers avoid topics such as the Holocaust or the Crusades for fear of upsetting their students. The report notes that:
"In particular settings, teachers of history are unwilling to challenge highly contentious or charged versions of history in which pupils are steeped at home, in their community or in a place of worship."
The researchers gave the example of one history department in a secondary school in a northern city which decided not to teach the Holocaust as a topic for GCSE coursework.

The report said the teachers feared confronting "anti-Semitic sentiment and Holocaust denial among some Muslim pupils". Christian parents at another school complained over the way the Arab-Israeli conflict was taught.

Deniers should just sit back and wait. Teachers, frightened of their students and their parents, are doing their work for them. I am repeatedly amazed at how fear of violence from Muslims results in self-censorship, e.g. the failure of newspapers to publish the Danish cartoons last year.

This telegraphs the message to those who have engaged in such violent responses: violence works.

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