A Croydon school has won an award for the excellence of its teaching about the Holocaust.

Harris Academy, South Norwood, received the award from University College London, taking the title of a Holocaust Beacon School.

Holocaust Beacon Schools serve as dynamic hubs co-ordinating a network of local schools, helping them to develop confidence, proficiency and excellence in Holocaust teaching and learning.

To mark the award and commemorate Holocaust Memorial Day – which took place on Sunday – Alex Brummer, City Editor of the Daily Mail and Vice-President of the Board of Deputies of British Jews, told pupils of his family’s experience of Nazi persecution in the 1930s and 40s.

He said that Holocaust teaching was vital in an age of fake news and disinformation, especially at a time when anti-Semitism had re-emerged in Britain.

Other guests at the event were Dr Rebecca Hale, Senior Research Associate at the UCL Centre for Holocaust Education and Patsy Cummings, Labour Councillor for South Norwood.

Through the Beacon programme, school staff can also explore their leadership potential in such areas as curriculum and school development.

Making the announcement, UCL praised the work of Harris South Norwood through its investment in staff, embracing of research informed practice and its integration of the Norwood Intent and its “Scholars, Citizens, Ambassadors” principals

In a report, it said that the school’s Executive Principal Nick Soar “quickly recognised the whole-school benefits of quality provision for and experience of Holocaust education and understood the academic and holistic outcomes that such a profound and rich learning experience could provide”.

UCL also recognised the contribution of Alan Marshall-Hick as the school’s Projects Lead Teacher.

The report concludes: “Together with the UCL Centre for Holocaust Education, Harris Academy South Norwood has truly embarked on the ‘Beacon School journey’ with thought, care and passion.”