Our students are watching, they are listening, and they are looking to their teachers (you!) for support making sense of it all.
We remain dedicated to advancing Jewish learning in our community. We will empower teachers, educational leaders, and parents with skills, tools, and resources to help their students flourish as human beings and as Jews.
Jewish life continues to evolve. To better realize our mission, serve our community, and sustain our work, Jewish LearningWorks is evolving, too. We have a strategic plan to guide our progress, and we're excited to share our roadmap with you.
Recognizing that Jewish life and community are profoundly changing, last year Jewish LearningWorks chose to undergo an inclusive strategic planning process – to reassess our purpose, strategies, as well as our operating and revenue model in light of those changes. We met with a cross section of stakeholders across our community, engaged in deep discussions with our staff and convened a task force to speak on behalf of groups they represent.
Rami's been coming to our INCLUDE Special Needs Family Camp for years. Rami has autism and he's non-verbal. So everyone was pleasantly surprised to see that he had learned to use a keyboard to communicate. Typing one letter at a time with a stick, Rami let us know what he wanted:
"I want Torah study this year that is challenging," he wrote. "Having some respect for our intelligence is critical for us to live good lives."
At our Family Camp, Rami did participate in Torah study. He used his keyboard to tell us that it was "a good discussion of the parasha (Torah portion)."
In ten days we celebrate Shavuot, and the giving of the Torah to the Jewish people. In Jewish tradition, we experience Shavuot as if we were there at Mt. Sinai receiving the Torah ourselves. The sense of solidarity and peoplehood - surrounded by Jews, all of us bound together by this shared experience - can be profound. "We were all there together," we say, and "we are all here together."
But, who is "we?"