Choices in Religious High Schools for Girls in Israel

Jerusalem Post Magazine cover

Four years ago, when my younger daughter was in 6th grade, I looked for an alternative to the standard ulpana (high school for girls in the national religious sector). After enrolling her in a new program in Tel Aviv, I became interested in innovations in other schools. This ultimately led an article that appeared in last Friday’s Jerusalem Post Magazine.

In the article I quote from an interview with Dr. Miri Shlissel, who has held key roles in teaching, administration, teacher training, and supervision within the sector. She lays out the history of the ulpana, and how societal changes in women’s roles have led to divergence from the standard model.

Shlissel describes what she views as two competing outlooks within the national religious community, calling them “religious Zionist” and “modern Orthodox.” The former is prevalent in the Tel Aviv and center of the country, while the latter is more likely to be seen in Jerusalem and Gush Etzion. I tried to imagine two prototypes of schools from the outlook and how they would compare regarding secular and Jewish studies, their attitude toward feminism, 
In addition, I spoke with educators from various schools, to illustrate how some of these questions play out in real life.

Hope you enjoy: Educating Israel’s religious young women, Jerusalem Post Magazine, August 31, 2018.

I wish all readers and their families a wonderful year of health, growth, satisfaction, and learning. 

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  1. Hi Hannah,

    According to this article:

    One of the people suing Ikea is a modern orthodox woman named Hannah Katsman. I just wanted to check if that’s you, or a different Hannah Katsman?

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