The School’s Perspective
In-depth interviews with principals, educators and coordinators from three schools in which the program was operated this year indicated that there is a high level of satisfaction with the program:
"I couldn't have hoped for more…When you consider communicating values through and connecting to Jewish sources, the Ten Commandments is the foundation of everything and so important. Our Bible teachers we do not have the luxury to devote so many hours to the Ten Commandments. We all benefited, especially the youth, every commandment was given over in a way that was relevant to their lives"
“This (program) specifically added significant value with respect to identity and values”
Most of the school staff interviewees agreed with the rationale of the program and some even expressed real identification with it:
"All values came from Judaism; there is really no such thing as core values of Judaism, as all values are contained in the Book of Books (the Bible). There are no universal values and Jewish values. All values can be sourced in Judaism.”
"The program rationale is correct – to show the relevance of the Ten Commandments to their lives…”
"Judaism has significant basic values for interpersonal relationships and if we follow them, we’ll be a better society and I’m not referring to the religious aspect but the social.”
“The best program we had. Both this school and the previous school I worked at, have had plenty of special programs and this is the best ever – relevant to the children in terms of their abilities, age, and environment”.
School staff also reported about the workshop leaders’ professionalism and the special connection between the workshop leader and the students in their school:
"I came to one of the classes when the teacher called me. It was a very moving session, which made some of the students cry. The workshop leader had run an exercise for a special- education class, (not an easy class at all), where they write letters of appreciation to their parents and this brought some of them to tears. We were pleasantly surprised when the students brought gifts to their workshop leaders to the last session. A personal connection was certainly created. The positive spirit the workshop leader created, and the activities that were relevant to the students made this program what it was. A methodology that creates a connection with the students is the most important thing for me.”
"The lesson was interesting because Ophir the workshop leader was incredible. He connected with the children, was interactive, and told stories; the way he teaches is exceptional. The children participated, they loved him. He connected to everyday life; he used videos, technology (smart board). I received great feedback from the children about the lessons and the workshop leader.”
"Our workshop leader was incredible, amazing personality. He ran the activities in a relevant and practical way; he came ready and organized to all sessions. He spoke to children at their level and they cooperated with him. He was professional and authoritative, while being also very nice and sensitive to the children and us”.
“The responses towards Menachem the workshop leader were very warm and good; he became a part of the family, the class, very fast. Something in his sensitivity made the children love him and open to him… adorable workshop leader with a big heart. I’m glad to have such people in the system and outside”.