All Victorian high schools will be required to educate students about the Holocaust, in a bid to tackle a concerning rise in anti-Semitism, racism and prejudice in both schools and the wider community.
Education Minister James Merlino on Wednesday instructed the Department of Education to ensure all year nine and 10 students at public schools are taught about the systemic murder of six million Jewish people by Nazi Germany and its allies during World War II.
While the Holocaust is in the current Victorian curriculum, Mr Merlino said it is "not taught in all schools, and when it is, it is often not taught as well as it could be".
He said he was concerned that "most kids today wouldn't be able to explain what the Holocaust was".
"It is vital that each generation understands the horror of the Holocaust to ensure it can never be repeated and to educate the community on the damage caused by anti-Semitism, racism and prejudice," Mr Merlino said.
New teaching resources will be developed by the government in partnership with Jewish community organisations and issued to all schools this year.
The move follows a number of antisemitic incidents at Victorian state schools last year, including reports a five-year-old boy was called a "Jewish cockroach", while another Jewish student was made to kneel down and kiss the shoes of a Muslim classmate.
Australian Associated Press