WINNIPEG — A Winnipeg high school hopes that teaching its students about the Holocaust will help put a stop to a recent spate of anti-Semitic bullying.
Ted Fransen, superintendent with the Pembina Trail school division, says earlier this summer during the holiday break a group of students from Shaftesbury High School sent hateful, anti-Semitic messages to another student through social media.
When the division found out, its leaders contacted the police and the B’nai Brith.
Fransen says they are bringing in Cantor Moshe Krause, a Holocaust survivor who became known for singing to fellow prisoners at the Bergen-Belsen concentration camp to buoy their spirits, to the school next week to speak with students and staff.
Fransen says he hopes it will be a rich learning experience.
A letter was also sent out to parents by the school’s principal, Catherine Birch, saying the school community was “saddened by these events.”
“We’re leaving the punitive pieces to the police, because there’s a justice element to this,” says Fransen.
“We’re going to make full advantage of being an education institution and doing a learning piece with the students.”
Police have spoken to a number of those involved and say no criminal charges are being laid.
“This is indeed a natural reaction of a strong and cohesive community,” says Birch.
“The actions of these students do not represent who we are as a school community. Shaftesbury is committed to our values of diversity and inclusion.”