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August 26, 1994 - Image 47

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
The Detroit Jewish News, 1994-08-26

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Learn Torah With...A FACSIMILE DIALOGUE ON THE WEEKLY TORAH PORTION

Only 5
Weeks
to

This Ain't No Sunday School Torah!

HEBREW SCHOOLS AND DAY SCHOOLS TEACH TORAH TO CHILDREN. THIS IS ADULT

Genesis 1

lar students, that will enhance
their personal identity and
national identity, is approaching
zero."
Ms. Sroka, who began teach-
ing Jewish studies at Reali in
1953, has been conducting a class
at Haifa University in the teach-
ing of the Bible for more than 30
years. "When I started I some-
times had over 40 teachers in the
class. Now I have six," she said.
The committee recommended
that the secular public "take back
responsibility" for teaching their
children about being Jewish.
"The [secular] public schools
do not have to surrender either
to extremism or to emptiness," it
said, arguing that various ap-
proaches to Jewish studies should
be presented. Education Minis-
ter Amnon Rubinstein agreed
with the report, saying, "We are
not prepared to abandon Jewish
studies solely to those who belong
to the Orthodox world."
Neither national religious nor
Orthodox education figures were
happy with the findings. Former
deputy education minister Moshe
Maiya, from the Shas (Sephardi
Orthodox) party, said that if
Mr. Rubinstein opened the teach-
ing of Judaism to Reform and
Conservative instructors, Shas
might refuse to rejoin the gov-
ernment.
The Shenhar panel argued
that Jewish studies must come
out of their ghetto. Jewish reli-
gion, history and literature
should be taught like other sub-
jects, in a probing spirit, it said.
Their development should not be
seen as separate from the non-
Jewish world, but in relation to
that larger world.
Further, the school system
must invest much more money
on Jewish studies classes, teacher
training and scholarships. Uni-
versity acceptance standards,
which give great weight to
achievement in science and
mathematics, must do the same
for excellence in Jewish studies,
the panel recommended.
As for how to counteract such
influences as "the decline in ide-
ology" and "the rise of the con-
sumer society" on Jewish identity
in Israel, neither the Shenhar
committee nor anyone else has
come up with an answer.

Publicity
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The normal deadline for
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deadline for birth announce-
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four days prior to issue date;
out-of-town obituaries, 10
a.m. Tuesday, three days pri-
or to issue date.

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