'Ethiopian aliyah must be made part of school curriculum'
Community representatives demand Education Ministry include story of their journey to Israel and their heritage in history textbooks
Yaheli Moran Zelikovich, Ynet
Israelis of Ethiopian descent approached the Education Ministry and demanded that the story of the community's immigration to Israel be included in history textbooks used in schools.
"Ethiopian Jews paid a heavy price for their Zionism: They were murdered, mugged, were held in detention camps on their way to Israel, and even after 30 years in the country their story is not part of the curriculum," said Tabeka, an Advocacy Center for Equality and Justice for Ethiopian Israelis in a letter to Education Minister Gideon Sa'ar.
A state ceremony commemorating the 4,000 Ethiopian olim who perished during the journey to Israel will be held on May 21.
"The organization demands to make the story of the Ethiopian aliyah and its heritage part of the school curriculum on this day, and part of the general curriculum as well, and to include the topic in the Knesset website's 'history' section," the letter stated.
According to Tabeka Chairman Itzik Desa, nearly every Ethiopian family had lost a relative on its way to Israel. "This day is a day of mourning and remembrance for the entire community.
"I laud the Israeli government for holding the ceremony… but regret the fact that the State of Israel has failed to make the minimal effort of including the heritage of Ethiopian Jews, and the story of the aliyah in particular, in the curriculum," he said.