Fresh beginnings are upon us.
The new year begins in just more than a week and school restarts in just less than a week.
GAJE’s chief cause, of course, is for the affordability of Jewish education.
Irrespective of the type of school – Jewish or public – that our children will be attending next week, we acknowledge that the first day can be fraught with fluttery stomachs and anxious nerves, especially for the little ones and the first timers. And parents!
Thus our hope is that all children returning to or starting school next week will have an easy, uneventful, perhaps even enjoyable and exciting day. May it be the start or the continuation of an excellent educational experience for them. And for parents too!
May we – parents and grandparents – know the sweet feeling that we have sent our children to school wrapped totally in our love so that their first steps may be confident ones, if also at times, tentative.
May the educators, administrators and lay leaders without whom there would be no educational experience, also enjoy the day and the year ahead.
Good learning, good teaching, good luck to children, parents, and teachers.
We draw readers attention to an interesting article by Chavie N. Kahn, Director of Day School Initiatives at UJA-Federation of New York, that appeared on the Lehrhaus website.
In the article, entitled Back to School: A Path to Sustainability, Ms. Kahn explores various steps that community organizers in the United States are taking to make Jewish education affordable. She concludes that one of the best methods of ensuring affordability is to establish a permanent endowment fund for that purpose.
We reproduce the following statement by Ms. Kahn. It commands our attention.
“There is no magic bullet to “solve” the affordability crisis. But since it is our collective responsibility to ensure that we transmit our tradition and values from generation to generation (Mishneh Torah, Laws of Torah Study, Ch. 1), we must strategize, plan, and attract new investors to the day school system, all with the objective of yielding sustainable day schools and yeshivot for years to come. We cannot simply focus on this year and next year’s budget; we need to play the long game. The long-term sustainability of day schools and yeshivot should be on the communal agenda as a key component of a solution to a core communal challenge. And the best players are playing the endowment game.”