As the fourth Arab country to make peace ties with Israel through the US-brokered deal, Morocco has chosen to diversify their education, and for the first time ever, include Jewish studies in their school primary school curriculum. Moroccan Jewish history is rich. In the 1940s, over 250,000 Jews lived in Morocco; however once Israel was established in 1948, numbers whittled down. Today, the Moroccan Jewish community stands at about 3,000 people.
The educational move came before the peace ties were announced, and have “the impact of a tsunami,” said Serge Berdugo, secretary-general of the Council of Jewish Communities of Morocco. Morocco has been moving to update their educational curriculum since 2014, and this is an exciting move made that will certainly impact the future generations and relationships between Arabs and Jews.
The Education Ministry is being supported by two Jewish associations, the American Sephardi Federation and the Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations. The organizations’ leaders published a statement on Twitter stating that “Ensuring Moroccan students learn about the totality of their proud history of tolerance, including Morocco’s philo-Semitism, is an inoculation against extremism.”