WARSAW, Poland (AP) — The Polish government and an American foundation are honoring a U.S. educator who together with his high school students made the world aware of Irena Sendler, a Polish woman who saved the lives of hundreds of Jewish children during the Holocaust.
Sendler, a social worker and member of the wartime Polish resistance, risked her life to smuggle Jewish children out of Warsaw's ghetto and even under torture by the Germans refused to reveal the identities of those she saved.
Sendler is credited with saving 2,500 children.
Her story was largely unknown until Kansas history teacher Norman Conard and his students began producing a play about her in 1999.
According to the Milken Family Foundation, Conrad encouraged four students at Uniontown High School in Uniontown, Kansas, to pursue a National History Day project, which led them to Sadler's story
Inspired by what she accomplished the students wrote the play Life in a Jar,", the Milken website said. They also went on CNN, CBS, and NPR to help spread her story.
Poland's Culture Ministry and the San Francisco-based Taube Philanthropies are presenting Conard with the 2018 Irena Sendler Memorial Award Monday in Warsaw.
Sendler died in 2008 at age 98.