Shalom Life | July 01, 2014

Why Choose Jewish? Forum to Debunk Myths About Day Schools

Open conversation on Jewish education comes to TanenbaumCHAT Wallenberg Campus

By: Dan Horowitz

Published: February 7th, 2014 in News » World

“Choose Jewish” is about to become more than just a catch phrase by ten Jewish day schools that banded together last year to present a united message to the community. The day school consortium is taking its common ground approach to the next level with “Why Choose Jewish?” a public forum on February 25, featuring some of the best minds in education.

Touted as an open conversation on Jewish day school education, the event is intended as a resource for parents on the brink of making that most significant of decisions: the kind of education they will give their child.

“Why Choose Jewish?” is targeted at parents, who are uncertain about Jewish day school in a marketplace of options that includes public, private, and secular education. They may be questioning whether it’s worth it, how it compares to the alternatives, or simply have preconceived notions.

“I hope to debunk the myths that day schools shelter students from the real world,” says Josh Elkin, former executive director of the Partnership for Excellence in Jewish Education (PEJE) who is coming in from the U.S. to moderate the panel. “I also intend to debunk the notion that day school students are not well-prepared for their next level of academics.”

Daniel Held agrees. “Jewish day schools offer not only a quality Jewish education, but stellar general studies,” says Held, the new executive director of the Julia and Henry Koschitzky Centre for Jewish Education (CJE). “Upon graduation, students have a multitude of options open to them and day school graduates flourish across academic and professional fields.”

The CJE, a department of UJA Federation, is a co-sponsor of “Why Choose Jewish?” In fact, its namesake, Julia Koschitzky, will introduce the evening and its participants, which include Elkin and a panel of parents, day school alumni, current students and educators.

The “Choose Jewish” campaign came out of a discussion amongst the marketing professionals at the participating day schools about the benefits of working together. The community took notice at the unprecedented collaboration and the logical next step was to engage parents directly.

“We all want to bring into our schools students whose parents have not considered the priceless value of a Jewish education for their children,” says Shana Harris, Head of School at Bialik Hebrew Day School, “and to understand the value – added benefits of a combined Jewish and general education.”

“Why Choose Jewish” takes place Tuesday, February 25, 2014 at 7:30 p.m. at TanenbaumCHAT Wallenberg Campus, 200 Wilmington Avenue.

For more information or to save your space, please visit www.choosejewish.com

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