Pasadena Unified School District Issues Armenian Genocide Resolution

Representatives of the Pasadena Unified School District and the Armenian National Committee of America--Pasadena Chapter with resolution passed on March 30, 2017 recognizing the Armenian Genocide.
Representatives of the Pasadena Unified School District and the Armenian National Committee of America--Pasadena Chapter with resolution passed on March 30, 2017 recognizing the Armenian Genocide.

Representatives of the Pasadena Unified School District and the Armenian National Committee of America–Pasadena Chapter with resolution passed on March 30, 2017 recognizing the Armenian Genocide.

PASADENA, Calif.—In its annual recognition of the anniversary of the Armenian Genocide, the Pasadena Unified School District’s (PUSD) Board of Education, at its well-attended meeting, issued on March 30 the Genocide Resolution to the attending Armenian National Committee of America (ANCA), Pasadena Chapter’s Board of Directors.  

The ANCA, Pasadena Chapter has grown accustomed to the School District’s recognition of the Armenian Genocide, and its esteemed board of Education’s solidarity in standing with the Armenian-American Community in paying homage to the 1.5 million victims, who in 1915, fell prey to the atrocities of the Ottoman Turks. With this being the commemoration of the 102nd anniversary of the Genocide, the world has much to do in correcting the wrongs of the past century in restoring lost Armenian lands, amongst other things, to its rightful owners, the Armenian people.     

“For the past 102 years, humanity has not been at a good place when it comes to justice for the Armenians,” expressed Pasadena ANCA Board Member Shahe Jierian. “Humanity has failed us miserably! It’s time the world redeemed itself by acting to restore every lost inch of Armenia’s historical lands to its rightful heirs and exact appropriate punitive measures on the perpetrators of the unspeakable acts committed by the Turks.”

On the occasion of the Board of Education’s issuance of the resolution, Hoori Chalian, the School District’s Director of Innovative Programs, and ANCA Western Region Education Committee Member, conveyed her heartfelt message on the Genocide to the board of education, which was followed by her introduction of three teachers from Pasadena High School to whom she presented award certificates for their invaluable contributions in collaborating to enlightening students on the Armenian Genocide.

The collaborative efforts of Genely Chan, Graphic Arts Teacher, Mayte Hernandez, English Teacher and William Jenkins, Social Studies teacher are highly commendable especially for facilitating an integrated project on Genocide awareness at Pasadena High School this past year. Focusing particularly on the Armenian Genocide, the Social Studies, Art, and English classes collaborated to create a major art installation which included a graphic silhouette of an Armenian Genocide death march, as well as paintings created by students and Haiku poems which expressed their feelings and ideas about the Armenian Genocide. This project encourages student lifelong learning, self- expression as well as learning about genocide effectively.

Last month, the ANCA-WR Education Committee held its inaugural statewide recognition awards banquet honoring educators who incorporate a comprehensive lesson plan on Armenian Genocide studies within their curriculum. Recognition and awards were given to educators who have shown an exemplary use of technology, art, music, and/or theater in their lesson plans, while also empowering their students to apply in-depth research on the specific topics within the context of the Armenian Genocide.  Chan, Hernandez and Jenkins were three of the 17 statewide recipients of this award.

Chalian, the school district’s Director Innovative Programs said, “For years we have been talking about how important it is to incorporate Genocide education in our curricula…how important it is to provide appropriate professional development to support teachers in this endeavor and to make sure the necessary instructional materials are easily accessible for planning and implementing powerful instruction. I would like to commend the Ms. Chan, Ms. Hernandez and Mr. Jenkins for their collaborative effort to plan and facilitate this powerful unit of study.  They are a shining example of the kind of instruction we’ve been speaking about for years – an example not only for our peers here in PUSD, but also for educators throughout the region.”

Prior to the esteemed Board of Education’s “unanimous” decision to issue the Resolution, the ANCA, Pasadena Chapter delivered its message in commemoration of the 102nd anniversary of the Armenian Genocide and acknowledged that Board of Education’s support of the Resolution was of moral significance, and standing with the Armenian-American Community to find a resolution to the long-standing demands of the Armenian Nation, all the more important.

The Armenian National Committee of America, Pasadena Chapter would like to extend its gratitude to, and salute the Pasadena Unified School District, its Board of Education and Superintendent Brian McDonald, for their outstanding and unwavering commitment, and in their unshakable resolve, in seeking to fight for truth and Justice.

The Armenian National Committee of America – Pasadena Chapter is the oldest, largest and most influential Armenian-American grassroots organization of its kind within the City of Pasadena. Founded in 1979, the Pasadena ANCA advocates for the social, economic, cultural, and political rights of the city’s thriving Armenian-American community and promotes increased civic service and participation at the grassroots and public policy levels.

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