The Genocide Education Project to
Create Rhode Island Curriculum
GenEd RI branch
representatives (L-R) Pauline Getzoyan & Esther
SAN FRANCISCO, CA – The Rhode
Island Council for the Humanities announced thirteen Major Grant
Award winners for 2011, including The Genocide Education
The almost $9000 award supports
the creation of a teaching kit and training workshops for
secondary school teachers. The kit and workshops will focus on
the Armenian Genocide, specifically using the experiences of
Armenian Genocide survivors who sought asylum in Rhode Island.
The Genocide Education Project is working with its
volunteer-based Rhode Island branch, led by Pauline Getzoyan and
Esther Kalajian, to create and promote the materials with
project director Sara Cohan, who serves as the Education
Director for The Genocide Education Project.
Getzoyan said, "I'm very
encouraged that the Rhode Island Council for the Humanities has
affirmed with this award that the history of the Armenian
Genocide should be included in public school curricula." The new
curriculum, titled, A Journey from Despair to Hope: The Story of
the Armenian Americans of Rhode Island will highlight the life
of Margaret Garabedian Der Manuelian, the grandmother of Pauline
Getzoyan. Der Manuelian was an Armenian Genocide survivor who
moved to Rhode Island in 1928. The curriculum will also trace
Der Manuelian's family through three generations in Rhode
Island. The teaching kit will include a video, primary
documents, and educational guides. To introduce the materials to
teachers, the team will host two one-day workshops in Rhode
Island in 2011.
Kalajian and Getzoyan have made
significant strides in reaching out to Rhode Island educators
over the past few years. They have created an awards program for
educators and organized projects to spark interest in teaching
about the Armenian Genocide. "I feel that this grant awarded by
the Council for the Humanities validates all our previous work
in Rhode Island.," said Kalajian.
The award was announced just days
after the U.S. Supreme Court's decision to decline hearing the
Griswold vs. Driscoll case against the Commonwealth of
Massachusetts. In so doing, the Supreme Court upheld the U.S.
Court of Appeals decision that Massachusetts has the authority
to bar genocide denial sources from being included in its
curriculum on the Armenian Genocide. The Genocide Education
Project supported the State of Massachusetts in this case by
signing an amicus brief on behalf of the State.
The Rhode Island Council for the
Humanities is an independent, nonprofit 501(c)(3) organization
that receives funding from the National Endowment for the
Humanities and private sources.
The Genocide Education
Project is a nonprofit, tax-exempt 501(c)(3) organization that
assists educators in teaching about human rights and genocide,
particularly the Armenian Genocide, by developing and
distributing instructional materials, providing access to
teaching resources and organizing educational workshops.