Everything Is Okay, Except when It Isn’t: A Fresh Approach to Jewish Education

Review: Not at Risk by Menachem Gottesman Ph.D. with Leah Leslie Gottesman, M.A. I cried while reading Not at Risk: Education as a Work of Heart, the story of the alternative Jerusalem high school Meled. Meled, which stands for Merkaz Lemida Dati (center for religious learning) was founded by the … [Read more...]

How To Combat Bullying in the Jewish Community

This year I again attended the conference, Shedding Light on the Darkness of Abuse, sponsored by the Tahel Jerusalem Crisis Center for Women and Children. The conference addressed a wide range of issues relating to treatment and prevention of abuse. The conference also addressed abuse by peers, … [Read more...]

Questions to Ask When Choosing a School for Your Children

This post originally appeared in January, 2009. Here is an update, including the original comments. When parents are choosing a school for their oldest child, they might imagine that they will find the perfect school. Compromise is more likely. But once you decide your priorities, you can go … [Read more...]

Sex Separation in State Religious Schools a National Issue

The story brewing over the last few months regards the character of the state religious schools, known in Hebrew by the acronym MM"D or mamad (not to be confused with safe rooms that use the same acronym and pronunciation). And like so many previous educational struggles involving mamad, this one … [Read more...]

Who "Owns" Your Kid’s Homework?

Some teachers think that parents are responsible for their kids' homework. Most parents think they are too. I disagree. I'm not saying that homework is unimportant, or that kids should get a pass.  But once children have been in school for a while, the responsibility for homework needs to … [Read more...]

How to Deal with Bullying

My friend shared the following story: Her 10-year-old son came home from school with a red slap mark on his face. He'd been hit hard enough that the mark was still visible by the time he got home. The parents called the school and the child was switched to the other class. But that afternoon … [Read more...]

Making Aliyah Mid-Year with Kids

I received this question from TYm: My family is planning to make aliyah next year in the late fall. We have two children 4 an 1 with a baby on the way. We are moving to Rehovot where I will be doing a post-doc in the sciences. We’re still not certain what my husband will have lined up. Any … [Read more...]

Principal Threatens Student with Social Isolation

(This is a similar, but different case than the more highly publicized Emanuel case. That one made it to court.) When Israeli parents in the religious system talk about school choice, they say they want education according to their religious standards. But in every conflict, you find that the main … [Read more...]

Gifted Education in Israel

A reader whose child was being tested for giftedness asked me to write about the Education Ministry's programs. Testing Israeli children are tested for giftedness in second or third grade, depending on the municipality. To be accepted into the education ministry's programming for the following … [Read more...]

Petach Tikva: Election Issues

In light of my previous post, Lion of Zion asked about the issues in the upcoming municipal elections.We will cast two ballots this Tuesday, one for the local council (27 seats) and another for mayor. This year 159,000 residents have voting rights, beginning at age 17. The incumbent mayor, Itzik … [Read more...]