PUPILS at a school in Houston have been praised for their efforts to ensure the horrors of the Holocaust are never forgotten.

Gryffe High was one of just five schools across Scotland to be recognised for good practice in Holocaust education at a special online event.

The awards were presented by Vision Schools Scotland – a partnership between the University of the West of Scotland (UWS) and the Holocaust Educational Trust, which is funded by the Association of Jewish Refugees and the Gordon Cook Foundation.

To win the prize, schools must demonstrate their existing commitment to the importance of Holocaust education and to developing teacher knowledge to ensure continued expertise in this subject matter.

Deputy First Minister John Swinney heaped praise on the winners at last week’s virtual awards ceremony.

He said: “Developing the skills that young people need to be responsible citizens is at the heart of Curriculum for Excellence.

“Holocaust education is an important part of this, as well as being crucial for Holocaust remembrance.

“I am therefore pleased to see a number of our schools recognised for their good practice in embedding Holocaust education across the curriculum.

“I’m sure the young people involved in these projects will take away valuable insights that will stay with them throughout their lives.”

Dr Paula Cowan, director of Vision Schools Scotland and Reader of Education in the School of Education and Social Sciences at UWS, praised pupils for focusing on Holocaust education despite the challenges presented by school closures during the coronavirus pandemic.

She said: “We are so delighted that a growing number of schools have expressed an interest in receiving this award. We are committed to presenting and facilitating continuing professional development for teachers in these schools to support their continued professional growth in Holocaust and citizenship education.”

Professor Craig Mahoney, Principal & Vice-Chancellor of UWS, said: “As a University which plays a leading role in the delivery of Holocaust education in Scottish schools, we are proud supporters of Vision Schools Scotland. We commend the five schools that have recently been recognised for their good practice in Holocaust education; demonstrating tremendous resilience and adaptability during these challenging times.

"We will continue to actively facilitate CPD, to encourage teachers to continually develop their knowledge and skills in this incredibly important subject area. On behalf of the UWS community, I extend huge congratulations to everyone involved in the programme.”

For more details of the programme, visit http://bit.ly/UWSVisionSchools.