New learning program combats bigotry, empowers students to take action
There’s a new education program called Voices into Action that helps teens develop social awareness. Created by experts to meet provincial standards for secondary school curriculum, this antiracism initiative challenges students to think critically about social justice and human rights issues. It’s free, it’s online, it’s launching in high schools this spring, and its goal is to empower young people to speak out and take action against intolerance.
You’ll find it at www.voicesintoaction.ca.
Voices into Action is the latest program from FAST (Fighting Antisemitism Together®), a non-profit organization established in 2005 to fund education and other projects that combat intolerance, bigotry, racism and hatred.
Since 2005, FAST’s Choose Your Voice program for kids in middle school has reached at least 20,000 students in Ottawa schools. The free program for students in grades 6, 7 and 8 has also won the Award of Excellence 2010 from the Canadian Race Relations Foundation.
Choose Your Voice tackles the issue of exclusion and inspires students to discover the stories of groups that have been discriminated against in Canada. In the classroom, youngsters hear firsthand accounts of anti-Semitism, racism and hatred.
Now, Voices into Action brings social justice to the head of high school classrooms. This program can be implemented across a range of subjects and its teaching units include human rights, genocide, understanding prejudice and discrimination, immigration and personal action. At www.voicesintoaction.ca, students will find an online resource dedicated to providing information on human rights issues, while teachers can access teaching tools, lesson plans and assessments.
In the classroom, as students explore, question, interpret and debate past and present human rights issues, including cyberbullying, the aim is for them to develop the know-how to oppose hateful acts and to eliminate bystander apathy.
For details about FAST, see www.fightingantisemitism.ca.