Education


Judaic Studies Department Faces Cutbacks at Brandeis University

By Nathaniel Popper

Brandeis University in Waltham, Mass., has been the site of a series of aggrieved faculty and student meetings in recent weeks, after the dean of arts and sciences proposed cutting faculty from a number of programs, including the signature Near Eastern and Judaic studies department.Dean Adam Jaffe proposed the cuts to make room forRead More


Columbia, JTS Mark Half a Century of Partnership

By Gabriel Sanders

The Jewish Theological Seminary and Columbia University celebrated the 50th anniversary of their joint undergraduate program this past November, prompting administrators and students past and present to toast half a century of fruitful collaboration between Conservative Judaism’s flagship institution and New York City’s sole Ivy LeagueRead More


YIVO Opens Internet Portal to the Past

By Rick Harrison

Ever wonder what it was like to walk down Lubartovska Street in the Polish city of Lublin in 1937? Or what a Jewish self-defense group in the Ukrainian port city of Odessa looked like in 1918? Or how a kindergarten music class in a Lithuanian Jewish school sounded 70 years ago? A new curriculum targeted at secondary school and college students —Read More


Youth Group Prepares Outreach to Yeshiva Officials

By Ethan Porter

Gay students often have a particularly difficult time in Orthodox schools. One young gay man to whom the Forward spoke — he asked to be identified simply as Chaim, since he is not out of the closet to most of his friends and family — recalled his experiences at a yeshiva in New York. The school’s rabbi, he said, used to pepper his lecturesRead More


Reform, Conservative Movements Collaborate on Principal Training

By Eric J. Greenberg

The educational arms of the Reform and Conservative movements are cooperating in an unprecedented way on a new project. Reform’s Hebrew Union College - Jewish Institute of Religion and Conservative’s Jewish Theological Seminary both have agreed to provide faculty and funds for the Leadership Institute for CongregationalRead More


Workshops Challenge the Deafening Silence Around Gay Issues

By Ethan Porter

Three years ago, a study conducted by the LGBT Education Collaborative about how Jewish schools deal with sexual diversity — one of the first studies of its kind — found that many educational institutions maintain a “deafening” silence on the subject.That is beginning to change.Mosaic: The National Jewish Center for Sexual and GenderRead More


Day Schools Learn To Sell Themselves In a Competitive Educational Market

By Jennifer Siegel

When Michael Raileanu moved to Forth Worth, Texas, in 2003, he was shocked to learn that many Jews there were unaware of the Fort Worth Hebrew Day School, the only Jewish academy in town. Raileanu was personally troubled, and for a good reason: He had relocated from Los Angeles to become the school’s new director.“Two Saturday morningsRead More


Coping With the Cost of College: Grandpa Can Help

By Max Gross

First, the bad news: If you have a child born after the year 2000, his or her total tuition bill for college could run in excess of a quarter-million dollars.Now, the good news: Harold Simansky can help you. His new workbook — “College Costs How Much?!” — contains all the sober facts about the cost of education, and offers a range ofRead More


Turning Living Rooms Into Schoolrooms

By Jennifer Siegel

As a transplant from Philadelphia to Nashville, Tenn., Bill Bernstein resigned himself to a life with fewer opportunities for the perfect bagel or for kosher Chinese food. But when he discovered that his 9-year-old son, Viktor, was bored and unhappy at the only Jewish day school in the city, Bernstein refused to accept his lack of options.Instead,Read More


Confirmation Class Blazes New Trail

By Lauren Appelbaum

This fall, as happens every fall, students in Hebrew schools around the country will begin their confirmation studies. But at Old York Road Temple Beth Am, this year will be a little different. Next spring, when the confirmation class conducts the service on Shavuot, five students with physical, cognitive and verbal disabilities willRead More





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  • This is what the rockets over Israel and Gaza look like from space:
  • "Israel should not let captives languish or corpses rot. It should do everything in its power to recover people and bodies. Jewish law places a premium on pidyon shvuyim, “the redemption of captives,” and proper burial. But not when the price will lead to more death and more kidnappings." Do you agree?
  • Slate.com's Allison Benedikt wrote that Taglit-Birthright Israel is partly to blame for the death of American IDF volunteer Max Steinberg. This is why she's wrong:
  • Israeli soldiers want you to buy them socks. And snacks. And backpacks. And underwear. And pizza. So claim dozens of fundraising campaigns launched by American Jewish and Israeli charities since the start of the current wave of crisis and conflict in Israel and Gaza.
  • The sign reads: “Dogs are allowed in this establishment but Zionists are not under any circumstances.”
  • Is Twitter Israel's new worst enemy?
  • More than 50 former Israeli soldiers have refused to serve in the current ground operation in #Gaza.
  • "My wife and I are both half-Jewish. Both of us very much felt and feel American first and Jewish second. We are currently debating whether we should send our daughter to a Jewish pre-K and kindergarten program or to a public one. Pros? Give her a Jewish community and identity that she could build on throughout her life. Cons? Costs a lot of money; She will enter school with the idea that being Jewish makes her different somehow instead of something that you do after or in addition to regular school. Maybe a Shabbat sing-along would be enough?"
  • Undeterred by the conflict, 24 Jews participated in the first ever Jewish National Fund— JDate singles trip to Israel. Translation: Jews age 30 to 45 travelled to Israel to get it on in the sun, with a side of hummus.
  • "It pains and shocks me to say this, but here goes: My father was right all along. He always told me, as I spouted liberal talking points at the Shabbos table and challenged his hawkish views on Israel and the Palestinians to his unending chagrin, that I would one day change my tune." Have you had a similar experience?
  • "'What’s this, mommy?' she asked, while pulling at the purple sleeve to unwrap this mysterious little gift mom keeps hidden in the inside pocket of her bag. Oh boy, how do I answer?"
  • "I fear that we are witnessing the end of politics in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. I see no possibility for resolution right now. I look into the future and see only a void." What do you think?
  • Not a gazillionaire? Take the "poor door."
  • "We will do what we must to protect our people. We have that right. We are not less deserving of life and quiet than anyone else. No more apologies."
  • "Woody Allen should have quit while he was ahead." Ezra Glinter's review of "Magic in the Moonlight": http://jd.fo/f4Q1Q
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