PALO ALTO, Calif. - Stanford University has placed an instructor on leave after reports surfaced that the person asked Jewish and Israeli students to identify themselves and separated them from the rest of the class.
The unidentified lecturer said that isolating the Jewish students in the classroom was similar to how Israel has treated Palestinians, according to the Forward.
The teacher also reportedly asked the class how many people died in the Holocaust. When a student answered, "Six million," the lecturer reportedly said, "Colonizers killed more than 6 million. Israel is a colonizer."
Rabbi Dov Greenberg, director of the Chabad Stanford Jewish Center, told the Forward he was told those stories by three students who were in the room when the instructor during a session for a required undergraduate course called "Civil, Liberal and Global Education."
Stanford issued a statement acknowledging a "report of a class in which a non-faculty instructor is reported to have addressed the Middle East conflict in a manner that called out individual students in class based on their backgrounds and identities."
Stanford added: "Without prejudging the matter, this report is a cause for serious concern. Academic freedom does not permit the identity-based targeting of students."