June 2007Welcome to the June e-newsletter of Brandeis University's Cohen Center for Modern Jewish Studies, Steinhardt Social Research Institute, and Fisher-Bernstein Institute.
Having reached the end of the academic year, it seemed like an appropriate time to focus attention on our work concerning education. During the past month, we released two reports in the field of Jewish education. The Impact of Day School is the first national study to examine day school outcomes in a comparative fashion. Sponsored by the Partnership for Excellence in Jewish Education (PEJE), the report compares day school alumni to their peers who attended non-Jewish private and public schools. The findings tell us that there is much to be proud about: Day school alumni perform on par with the best of students from other private and public high schools. They also avoid much of the self-destructive behavior that is widespread among college students, and they express strong commitment to their Jewish identities and education.
The second report is part of a larger study, sponsored by the Jim Joseph Foundation, of the Jewish educational infrastructure for preschool through college. An earlier report, Mapping Jewish Education: The National Picture, described the roles played by federations, foundations, and other Jewish agencies in creating an educational system across communities. It also explored the funding of educational programs. The recent second report, highlighted below, catalogs and evaluates professional development opportunities in Jewish education.
Our hope is that the questions and recommendations emanating from these reports will serve as guideposts for future efforts to grow and improve Jewish education. As always, we look forward to your comments and suggestions.
- Leonard Saxe, director of the Cohen Center for Modern Jewish Studies and the Steinhardt Social Research Institute
- Amy Sales, director of the Fisher-Bernstein Institute
In Contact, the Journal of Jewish Life Network/Steinhardt Foundation, Mark I. Rosen examines community outreach strategies for young parents and discusses those programs that appear to meet the unique needs of new parents at this stage of life, in particular those features that attract unengaged and intermarried parents.
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