From August 2-5, 2021, BJE will hold a summer session of L’Dor V’Dor: BJE March of the Living Digital Edition, in partnership with Holocaust Museum Los Angeles (HMLA). The program is designed both to offer 10th through 12th grade students a meaningful service learning experience, and to offer isolated and vulnerable Holocaust survivors additional opportunities to share their stories of resilience.
In an essay titled “Israel: The Ever-dying People,” the twentieth century Jewish thinker Simon Rawidowicz observes that Israel (the Jewish people) has, throughout history, viewed itself as “constantly on the verge of ceasing to be, of disappearing.” This is by no means limited to such times as the destruction of the First and Second Temple in Jerusalem, commemorated on the 9th of Av (this year, Saturday night/Sunday, July 17-18). One can hardly find a generation, writes Rawidowicz, “which did not consider itself the final link in Israel’s chain.”
Even amid the challenges of the pandemic, BJE’s 2020-2021 Campaign exceeded its goal thanks to our generous donor community and committed leadership. Services required of BJE, by our community’s schools, educators, parents and students were significantly greater this year. Your generosity helped ensure that BJE was able to respond to additional needs, quickly and nimbly.
By Dr. Gil Graff
By Rabbi Jim Rogozen
Recent articles and gatherings, including Prizmah’s Mental Health Summit, have addressed a growing concern about mental health issues in our schools. While creating initiatives to address the mental health needs in our school communities is necessary, the long-term success of these efforts is not guaranteed.
Having difficult conversations – with parents, colleagues, employees and supervisors – is part of any early childhood director’s experience. Learning how to successfully navigate these conversations so that each party feels heard, and progress can be made, is critical.
By Dr. Gil Graff
BJE Honors Religious School Educators
Like educators in so many settings, teachers and administrators in part-time religious schools rose to the challenges of this year in a huge way, pivoting overnight to digital platforms, and often providing critical emotional support to students overwhelmed by the pandemic. It is BJE’s great privilege to honor six of these educators.
Counting each day of the seven weeks between Pesach and Shavuot is referred to as Sefirat Ha’Omer – a reference to the “wave offering” of a sheaf of ripe grain (an Omer), brought to the Temple in Jerusalem, from the beginning of the grain harvest in Israel to its conclusion.
The Talmud considers this period to be one of semi-mourning, in memory of a plague (or Roman soldiers) that killed thousands of Rabbi Akiva’s students.