Though all German children discuss the Third Reich as part of their school curriculum, not enough is being taught about modern ideas of human rights and discrimination – and teachers are often poorly equipped to counteract the extreme right wing’s aggressive recruiting of young people, the experts said.
“Short term projects which are time-limited from year to year are not enough,” said Eva-Maria Stange, a member of Saxony’s state legislature. “We need a stable structure.”
The November revelation of a neo-Nazi terror cell – three people are suspected of killing a policewoman and at least 9 people with a migration background between 2000 and 2007 – has heightened calls for authorities to do more to prevent young people from being lured into a life of extremism.
Finding solutions will take some effort, said the experts who have called for a consistent, large-scale effort to coordinate a fight against extremism among youth.
Freiburg University of Education sociologist Albert Scherr said there should be a federally funded foundation that spearheads anti-discrimination education efforts. Scherr said schools should incorporate more human rights and anti-racism education into the core curriculum.