By Ruthi Soudack
A festive and interesting day-long conference was held for all employees of the Society for Advancement of Education, Jerusalem, on August 27th, 2018. The conference, focused on the topic of “Dialogue,” took place at the Mae Boyar High School in Jerusalem, and was attended by some 300 people.
The day included two small group discussions about the essence of “dialogue”, as well as a lecture by Prof. Eva Illouz, Professor of Sociology at the Hebrew University, on the topic of “Dialogue as Democracy.”
Both Professor Illouz, and those who spoke during the day’s opening address, commented on the variegated audience in the room – religious and secular, Arabs and Jews – and how it constitutes an expression of successful dialogue. This is evidence of SAE’s emphasis on pluralism, and its reaching out to new populations with the Sindiana Arab Youth Village, the new Shoshanim Arts and Sciences School for Haredi Girls, and others. At the end of the day, participants were treated to the play “Four Fathers,” performed by the Aspaklaria Theatre Company, dealing with dialogue with one’s children.
Roi Sher, teacher of cinematography at the Boyar School: “I am excited about the new year. Today’s conference emphasizes a culture of dialogue, which is happening continually, but of which we’re not always aware. I would like to highlight it with my students.”
Andera Biadse, Principal of the Sindiana School: “This is a very meaningful and important day, expressing the human mosaic here . . . . This year, at Sindiana, reality is beyond our dreams and imagination, as we are opening the year with 400 students and 35 teachers, after only one year in existence. We believe it will be a great success.”
Rabbi Bezalel Cohen, Head of the Hachmey Lev Yeshiva High School: “I think they chose THE key subject in education for the focus of today’s conference, with the understanding that correct speech will bring positive results, and that every mistake has its consequences. It has been a very successful day. . . This year, Hachmey Lev is challenged – it has grown in quality . . . . Our challenge is to publicize the quality. The mechina [preparatory year] for 7th and 8th graders that we are opening this year is an important milestone, and we very much hope that it will prove itself.”
Vered Bachar, Principal of the new Shoshanim Arts and Sciences School for Haredi Girls, opening this year: “My excitement is beyond words. So I’ll just quote [Psalms] and say ‘Silence is your praise.’”