«Jewish Observer»
February 2002
5762 Shvat

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Everyone knows that the Jewish community can't exist without Jewish education. One can't bring up a new generation, which will be able to support the Jewish traditions, culture and the way of life without education. That's why every reviving community pays great attention to the Jewish education centers which would restore the Jewish traditions, make the Jewish school the pledge of the community's prosperity at present and future.

The principals of the Jewish schools in the CIS and Baltic countries spoke about this during the seminar held in Dnepropetrovsk on January 6-10. The seminars were held in the Choral synagogue "Golden Rose" and in the community center called after Rosalind Gorvin. The members of the Association of Jewish school principals were discussing problems and perspectives, forming conceptions of Jewish education in the former USSR. The representatives of the Israeli Embassy in Ukraine Alick Nadan, Shmuel Rivlin, Max Shenkerman, the representative of the department of education NATIV Yael Aizenshtat, the representative of the Dnepropetrovsk's region administration Dmitriy Erokhin attended the seminar.

The Association is 10 years old. It's time to summarize the work done and plans for future. "There are about fifty Jewish schools in the Association now - said Grigory Lipman, the representative of the Association, - some of the schools have been functioning for ten years already, some of them are new. New schools need Jewish education "veterans" to help them. Besides, every school has its own experience (positive and negative). Such seminars give an opportunity to communicate, exchange the ideas, find something new. The emergence of new Jewish schools every year makes us think that we are on the right way".

The members of the seminar said that one of the main problems in the CIS countries is the lack of teachers for Jewish traditions. That's why a great attention was paid to a unique Dnepropetrovsk women's pedagogical college "Bet Hana", which trains highly qualified teachers for Jewish schools or kindergartens. The specific methods and technologies used in the College were highly assessed.

Certainly, all the seminar's participants visited the biggest Jewish school in Eastern Europe "Or Avner Habad Lyubavich". They mentioned that Dnepropetrovsk was the leader of the Jewish community revival on the territory of the former USSR and that schools take an important place in the Jewish life of our city. Jerry Hokhbaumm, the President of the Memorial Fund of the Jewish culture, which supports the Association of the Jewish schools principals in the CIS and Baltic countries, summed up: "The Jewish school is the main part of the Jewish community. It's the pledge and the main hope for the revival of the Jewish life of full value".


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