As readers of this weekly update know, GAJE’s core mission is to try to help make Jewish education affordable for as many young families that seek it for their children. Our mission, of course, flows directly from the belief that Judaism is a blessing indeed for all humankind, not for the men, women and children who are Jewish. And that intense Jewish education is the best guarantor that our children will learn and know how to perpetuate Judaism for all generations to come. We support, endorse and encourage families that are able, to provide meaningful Jewish education to their children.
That is why we reproduce, in full below, an important message sent to the community this week from Daniel Held, Chief Program Officer, UJA Federation of Greater Toronto. It is vital that as many young parents be made aware that the community will help share the financial burden – for certain families – of providing a Jewish education for their children.
“We are excited to share that applications for the 2022-23 school year are now open for UJA’s newest Jewish day school affordability program – the Generations Trust Scholarship!
“Think your family won’t qualify for day school tuition relief? You may be surprised! Find out in just two minutes how much you could save through our easy-to use online calculator.
“We believe passionately that every community member who seeks to grow in their Jewish knowledge should have the opportunity to do so. Research confirms the power of a day school education to build future Jewish leaders – and ultimately to create a community defined by high levels of Jewish identity and connections to Israel. Our entire community is stronger when children benefit from Jewish learning.
“For more than 40 years, UJA’s Tuition Assistance Program has enabled thousands of students to benefit from a day school education. Unfortunately, many families have not previously qualified for tuition assistance, but have struggled to afford day school with the growing cost of living in the GTA. The Generations Trust Scholarship was launched this spring to fill the gap – and hundreds of families are already benefiting.
“We are tremendously grateful to the leading community philanthropists who have made this important program possible. Help us spread the word that day school tuition relief is available for more families than ever across Greater Toronto!
“We encourage you to share this email with family or friends who may be interested.
“Sincerely, Dan Held, Chief Program Officer, UJA Federation of Greater Toronto.”
We urge you to check into THE GENERATIONS TRUST SCHOLARSHIP. It might work for your family.
We also urge you to let the Government of Ontario hear your disappointment, if not anger, with its ongoing discrimination against the children in Jewish and other independent schools. It is unfair and unjust that the government supports the education of only one religion in the province. But it is utterly inexcusable and deeply hurtful that the government is completely indifferent to the health and safety concerns of the children attending Jewish and other independent schools arising from the Covid pandemic.
No other conclusion is supportable in light of the facts:
• Ontario distributed not even one penny to independent schools of the $763 million Safe Return to Class Fund distributed by the federal government to Queen’s Park for the benefit of all Ontario children ages 4 – 18 attending school.
• Ontario is distributing rapid testing only to “publicly funded schools”.
Is there no Covid-related jeopardy to the some 150,000 children in independent schools? Of course, there is. The virus does not discriminate. But the government does. What message caring for them does the government of Ontario send to their parents, grandparents and friends?
Moral suasion, private lobbying, public advocacy and plain parental pleading have failed over the past quarter century and more to get Ontario to ends its discrimination in education funding. Now that we see Ontario also discriminating in matters touching upon the health of our children during a public health crisis, we understand that the courts now are our only option to compel Queen’s Park to do the right thing.
To help underwrite the lawsuit that GAJE is preparing, please click here.
(For further information, please contact Israel Mida at firstname.lastname@example.org)
Charitable receipts for donations for income tax purposes will be issued by Mizrachi Canada. Your donations will be used for the sole purpose of underwriting the costs of the lawsuit.
Shabbat shalom. Chanukah samayach.
Grassroots for Affordable Jewish Education (GAJE),
November 26, 2021