Although 70 years have passed, when minority kids learn about the Holocaust it has a special meaning today for them.
“Jewish and black people have had a lot in common in the last century,” the teacher, Jackie Goldblum of Community Day School in Squirrel Hill, said. “But in an at-risk community, it’s often all about themselves and survival.”
The Community Day School began a two year partnership with Higher Achievement Pittsburgh’s after school program in which they work with city students in classes that show lessons about ethic and racial prejudices from the Holocaust relate to their lives today. The Alfred Oppenheimer Memorial Fund gave the initiative a $20,000 grant.
Middle School students are recruited by Higher Achievement Pittsburgh to join summer classes and after school programs for 13 hours each school week and a total of 650 extra academic hours every year. All students are of color, and many families live below the povferty line. Students are accepted based on motivation rather than test scores.