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Russia Announces Compulsory Patriotic History Education for 7-Year-Olds

Dmitry Feoktistov / TASS

The Russian Education Ministry has announced plans that will require children as young as seven to study history, as part of a wider push to promote "patriotic" education amid the war in Ukraine.

“Historical education will begin in schools from the first grade,” Education Minister Sergei Kravtsov said at the opening of an exhibition called “Everyday Nazism” which is due to be shown at a nationwide schools forum, “The Power is in the Truth.”

“[In our teaching of history], we will never allow it [to be written] that we somehow treated other nations – our fraternal nations of Ukraine and Belarus – poorly. We will do everything in our power so that historical memory is preserved.”

The plans will lower the age of children taking compulsory history lessons by three years, and will see historical education incorporated into existing parts of the school curriculum.

Kravtsov also said that from Sept. 1, schools will start each week by singing the Russian national anthem and raising the Russian flag. 

Russian President Vladimir Putin also made a speech to forum participants stressing the importance of children knowing their country’s history.

“A deep understanding of our history, and a respectful, thoughtful attitude to the great patriotic, spiritual and cultural heritage of the Fatherland enables us to draw correct conclusions from the past,” the Russian president said. 

“The Power is in the Truth,” the first forum of its kind in Russia, is set to take place on the eve of May 9, the day Russia celebrates the anniversary of Nazi Germany’s surrender to Soviet troops in 1945. 

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