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NY teacher who assigned Nazi letter put on leave
The Associated Press
Saturday, Apr. 13, 2013 | 12:57 PM Modified Sat, Apr 13, 2013 02:08 PM
ALBANY, N.Y. -- A high school English teacher who had students pretend to be Jew-hating Nazis in a writing assignment has been placed on leave.
The teacher at Albany High School caused a storm of criticism after having students practice the art of persuasive writing by penning a letter to a fictitious Nazi government official arguing that "Jews are evil."
District Superintendent Marguerite Vanden Wyngaard held a news conference Friday to apologize for the assignment.
The Times Union newspaper reported ( http://bit.ly/ZTc4PU) on Saturday that the teacher was not in class on Friday and had been placed on leave by the school district.
The district has not named the teacher, who was described as a veteran.
AP Photo - Albany Public Schools Superintendent Marguerite Vanden Wyngaard speaks about a Nazi-themed assignment given to students during a news conference on Friday, April 12, 2013, in Albany, N.Y. Vanden Wyngaard said a high school English teacher could face disciplinary action for giving the writing assignment that asked students to make a persuasive argument blaming Jews for the problems of Nazi Germany.
The writing assignment was done before a planned class reading of the memoir "Night," by Holocaust survivor Elie Wiesel.
For the assignment, the teacher asked students to research Nazi propaganda, then write a letter trying to convince an official of the Third Reich "that Jews are evil and the source of our problems."
"Review in your notebooks the definitions for logos, ethos, and pathos," the teacher's assignment said. "Choose which argument style will be most effective in making your point. Please remember, your life (here in Nazi Germany in the 30's) may depend on it!"
Wyngaard said she didn't think the assignment was malicious but "it displayed a level of insensitivity that we absolutely will not tolerate."
Many of the students were dismayed by the assignment. Some refused to write the essay.
Read more here: http://www.fresnobee.com/2013/04/13/3256397/ny-teacher-who-assigned-nazi-letter.html#storylink=cpy
I can understand why the concern over this assignment was so controversial. First of all this assignment comes on the heels of Yom Shoah ..The start of the holocaust, as well as the coming of Israel's Indepedence Day.
And yet not even a month earlier another "Stupid" assignment was given by a professor of FAU. IMaybe I just don't understand where "education" is going these days, but I disagree with Wyngaard, both of these exercises were offensive, and malicious and insensitive, especially to students who have family members that survived the holocaust, and families that are extremely religious in their devotions to their belief in Jesus..
Florida Atlantic University Apologizes for ‘Jesus Stomping’ Classroom Exercise
Boca Raton, Florida – A university in Southern Florida that came under fire this week after a student claimed that he was suspended for refusing to stomp on a piece of paper bearing the word “Jesus” has issued an apology.http://christiannews.net/2013/03/24/florida-atlantic-university-apologizes-for-jesus-stomping-classroom-exercise/