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After Oct. 7, Shoah exam optional for Israeli high-schoolers

That part of the matriculation exam will not be required this academic year.

Illustrative image of a classroom. Photo: Lopolo/Shutterstock
Illustrative image of a classroom. Photo: Lopolo/Shutterstock

Following the worst single-day massacre of Jews since the Holocaust on Oct. 7, Israeli high school students will not be required to take the Holocaust section of the history matriculation exam.

“Many inquiries were received from professionals and parents noting that dealing with the Holocaust raises great emotional and mental difficulties. Therefore, it was decided to, temporarily, not obligate the students to take the Holocaust chapter of the matriculation exam,” the Education Ministry said in a statement on Sunday.

The decision applies only to the current academic year. Students will still have the option of taking that part of the exam.

Israeli Holocaust education trips to Poland were set to resume this academic year after a three-year hiatus but were nixed in November following the Hamas massacre in the northwestern Negev the previous month and the ensuing war against the terrorist group in Gaza that spread to other fronts.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Saturday night reiterated Jerusalem’s commitment to destroying Hamas, freeing the hostages still being held in the Gaza Strip by the terrorist group and ensuring that the enclave can never again pose a security threat to the Jewish state.

“We will never forget the atrocities of Oct. 7. We will never forget the massacre, the rapes, the murders and the mutilations. We will never forget the abductions,” Netanyahu began in an address to the nation on International Holocaust Remembrance Day.

“As of today, we have returned 110 of our hostages and we are committed to returning all of them home. We are dealing with this, and we are doing so around the clock, including now. We will never forgive what the Hamas monsters did to our daughters and our sons; therefore, there is no alternative to total victory. We must win—and we will win,” Netanyahu said.

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