In a recent post on the blog of the BJE of Los Angeles, Dr.Eliezer Jones of Yeshiva University's Institute for University School Partnership singled out the MHA and our Curriculum21 project as one that is leading the way toward meaningful - and much needed - change in Jewish Education. Dr. Jones begins his piece by noting that resistance to change, which is unfortunately often found in schools and in Jewish schools in particular, can have a devastating effect on our children and their future. Though he cites an example of a Jewish Day School that was forced to close due to its failure of adapt, he goes on to argue that there is reason for hope. He writes:
First, it should be made clear, that there are schools and organizations that are rising to the challenge of educating our children in the 21st century. Schools like Rocketship in Northern California and High Tech High in Southern California are wonderful models of 21st century learning. Among Jewish day schools, there are examples like Margolin Hebrew Academy in Memphis, TN, which is undergoing a 21st century change project and a number of LA-area day schools and yeshivot that have illustrated a strong commitment to educational technology integration through school-wide one-to-one laptop and iPad programs. These Jewish day schools, and a handful of others, are models for adopting change.
With such exposure comes great responsibility. We are indeed doing exciting things here and we have, indeed, created a faculty culture that is largely open and embracing of change. With eyes upon us from all part of the country, however, we must redouble our dedication to this project and our commitment to ensuring that we are equipping our students, in all subject and throughout all of our grades, with the tools for religious, professional, emotional, and academic success in their world of the future, rather than in our world of the past.