Yellowknife, Northwest Territories
Yellowknife, Northwest TerritoriesiStock

Canada’s Northwest Territories, in response to B’nai Brith Canada advocacy, has decided to follow Ontario’s lead and incorporate Holocaust education into their Grade 6 curriculum, B’nai Brith Canada said in a statement on Tuesday.

In the past month, B’nai Brith has engaged with senior education officials across the country in a push to ensure provinces and territories include robust Holocaust education in their curriculums. On Tuesday, B’nai Brith received a letter from the Northwest Territories’ Minister of Education, Culture and Employment, R. J. Simpson, acknowledging our encouragement and confirming that his jurisdiction will implement Holocaust education in 2023.

Northwest Territories’ announcement comes several weeks after the government of the province on Ontario announced it is introducing a mandatory learning requirement on Holocaust education to the province's Grade 6 curriculum.

The Grade 6 learning requirement on Holocaust education in Ontario will be implemented in September 2023. A similar requirement is currently part of the Grade 10 Canadian history curriculum.

“We are excited about working with provinces and territories across Canada in our efforts to ensure every student learns about the Holocaust,” said Marvin Rotrand, National Director of B’nai Brith’s League for Human Rights. “There are promising developments emerging from numerous jurisdictions, including as far as the Northwest Territories.”

“We are thrilled that Minister Simpson has informed us that the Northwest Territories are following Ontario’s lead and adding Holocaust education,” said Michael Mostyn, Chief Executive Officer of B’nai Brith Canada. “The Holocaust is a tragic epoch that serves as a lesson on the importance of respect for human dignity. We want students across the country to know about details of the Holocaust so that we can ensure its horrors are understood and the antisemitism at its core has a better chance of being rejected by Canadians.”