Mother opened her 7-year-old’s RE homework to find antisemitic images blaming ‘Jew leaders’ for Jesus’ death

A horrified mother has hit out at her seven-year-old son's 'antisemitic' homework that claimed Jews were responsible for the death of Jesus Christ.

Joanne Bell said the homework, provided by Topmarks, portrayed Jewish people as 'bloodthirsty'.

The homework made claims that Jewish leaders 'wanted Jesus to be guilty,' and that they 'paid people to lie about him,' before calling calling for his crucifixion.

Topmarks says it has removed the text from its resources, while director Chris Spolton apologised to Ms Bell.


Explaining why the passage had been written, Mr Spolton said: 'I was young and naive. It was written circa twenty years ago based on books found in the local library, and the dated images were downloaded clip art.'

Jewish groups slammed Topmarks, saying it was 'sickening,' that the question had been presented as a 'factual education'.

The horrified mother - who says she is an activist against antisemitism - posted about the homework on Twitter

She wrote: 'Got to love Britain, doing my child's RE home-schooling today. Why not teach the Blood Libel, hey.

'What harm has it ever done to portray Jews as bloodthirsty and solely responsible for the death of the believed son of G-d, Jesus.

'I am in shock. This for seven-year olds.'

Topmarks - the education website responsible for creating and distributing the homework - simply blocked Ms Bell when she raised the issue with them.

A day later, it unblocked her and its director, Chris Spolton, tweeted her to apologise, saying he was 'young and naive' when he put the homework together.

He wrote: 'Hello Joanne. Sorry for the delay, I've been unwell post-vaccine.

'We are sorry for any offence to or misrepresentation of the Jewish community, it was not our intention, and we have removed the Bible story.

'Thank you for bringing it to our attention. I have unblocked you.'Another user then asked why she had been blocked in the first place, to which Mr Spolton replied: 'It was an unnecessary mistake.'

Explaining the material, he said: 'I was young and naive. It was written circa twenty years ago based on books found in the local library, and the dated images were downloaded clip art.

'I literally hadn't reviewed the story for decades and had pretty much forgotten about it. I'm glad you contacted me with your concerns and that I've been able to remove it quickly.'

Ms Bell says her son's school apologised after the question left the headteacher 'horrified'.
Jewish groups slammed the homework provider and the school, which has not been named, saying they had used an 'antisemitic trope'.

A spokesperson from Campaign Against Antisemitism said: 'The notion that the Jews killed Jesus is an antisemitic trope which dates back millennia.

'It has been used as a supposed justification for the persecution of Jews in the Christian world for centuries and is still often cited in abuse of Jews today.

'It is sickening that this material was presented to young children as factual education.

'The apologies from Topmarks and the school in question are welcome, as is the withdrawal of the material.

'But educational material for children, particularly in sensitive fields, must be written and vetted by reliable experts.

'For Topmarks to be offering materials that, by its own admission, were created by someone 'young and naive' enough to present a blood libel as fact and not review that in decades is unacceptable.'

The term blood libel refers to a completely false allegation, dating back centuries, that Jewish people use the blood of Christians in rituals.

The Board of Deputies of British Jews added: 'This is wholly inappropriate material for an RE class.'

Source: Daily mail

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