'More than 40% of people don't know about Auschwitz..how can that be?' One locals reaction to a new bill in Indiana

A new bill proposed by Senator Jon Ford requires 6th-8th grade students to study the Holocaust. News 10 reached out to locals for their reactions.

Posted: Feb 14, 2019 7:40 PM

TERRE HAUTE, Ind. (WTHI)- A new bill proposed by Senator Jon Ford requires students in 6th through 8th grade to study the Holocaust.

It is a topic frequently taught in high school but not typically on the curriculum for middle schoolers.

The Holocaust was one event that is hard to forget which is why some locals feel it's important to maintain that memory in the classroom.

Dorothy Chambers has worked at Candles Holocaust Muesum for the past five years and she is constantly surrounded by reminders of what happened.

She often visits Auschwitz with Holocaust survivor, Eva Kor, and each time the visit brings new feelings.

"It stands as a test to humanity, and it's a remind that we can't let it happen again," Chambers said.

Chambers says teaching middle school students would allow an opportunity for a deeper connection to the subject.

"93% of American adults feel Holocaust education should be required in schools. So the recognition of holocaust education is here..we know this is somethng of value to teach our children. We just need to figure out an effective way of doing it," Chambers told us.

Betsy Frank is the President of the United Hebrew Congregation here in Terre Haute. She told News 10 that a study shows over forty percent of Americans don't know about Auschwitz. 

"Over forty percent of Americans don't know about Auschwitz..how can that be? How can that be," said Frank.

She also says that people often don't think about the Holocaust because it happened so far away.

"It did happen in Europe, it did happen 70 years ago, but that's not very long. Some of those survivors are still alive today," said Frank.

Survivors like Eva Kor, who created the Candles Museum, remind us that it did happen and that it's possible to remember such a horrific event by educating those around us.

"Over middle school and high school that they will have something as they become adults that sticks with them and that will affect their lives," said Chambers.

The bill is still in the early stages but both Chambers and Frank hope that it goes in effect sooner rather than later.

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