Cincinnati (May. 14)
(By our Cincinnati Correspondent)
How to provide Jewish education for thousands of children and adults, especially those who, finding themselves in an environment totally strange, are gradually drifting away from their people; how to revitalize Jewish life in this country and to give it true Jewish content; the progress made in these directions during the past year, and the responsibilities which the future places upon the leadership of the American Jewish community were some of the topics discussed at the sessions of the third annual conference of the National Council for Jewish Education concluded here on Sunday.
The work being done by the Nation Council for Jewish Education was presented by its presidents, Israel Chipkin, educational director of the Jewish Education Association of New York.
“Jewish education,” Mr. Chipkin declared, “has been referred to as a problem and as a process in social and cultural adjustment. It has both communal and individual aspects. For the community or group, Jewish education must signify cultural self-preservation and adjustment. In this country it must represent an adjustment to the American environment and a contribution to American life. For the individual Jewish education and Jewish cultural life must mean the cultivation and enrichment of personality.
“It is hardly possible that this very complicated and important problem can be solved or that this refined and intricate process can be developed without due recognition and application of modern scientific methods. an intimate knowledge of American standards and a keen appreciation of Jewish values. In other words, the grave responsibility involved in the tasks of Jewish education today may he entrusted only to those who have had a high degree of professional training which includes a higher university education. a fairly complete pedagogic equipment and an intensive course of Jewish study. And one additional requisite-a pioneering or missionary spirit.
“The Council was founded through the efforts of the Bureau of Jewish Education in New York City of which Dr. S. Benderly is the leader. In the very short period of its existence it has already stimulated its individual members to assemble data concerning many elements of the problem. They have made communal surveys of local educational situations, they have made significant experiments in methodology, they have added text books and created now pedagogic literature. They have sought to establish modern standards in their new buildings, in the training of teachers and of their employment, and they have also begun to compose tests and scientific norms for the measuremnt of teaching results in language, history or other subjects of the curriculum. There are two outstanding undertakings. First, their attempt to organize Jewish educational activity in each community as a communal enterprise and responsibility. Second, their attempt to evaluate all Jewish educational activity in order to determine its direction for the community at large and for the individual in particular, and also with a view to discover its relation to the American environment and the Jewish of Europe and Palestine. In these undertakings, they have not limited their-conception of Jewish education to children in the elementary schools, but have considered the growing Jewish personality at all stages of the individual’s life, and have concerned themselves with the home, the synagogue, the lodge, the social center, the camp the street as well as the school.
“The high educational standards sought by its members have won for the profession the recognition of University and State authorities. Several of our Jewish training schools for teachers have been authorized by State legislatures and State educational departments to grant higher academic degrees. Some universities have added course in Jewish history and Hebrew for which they give regular academic credits. Last year the University of Chicago introduced courses in Jewish education in its graduate department. This year, through the initiative of the Council, Teachers College of Columbia University, has established a regular course in Jewish education for the increasing number of Jewish graduate students who are coming to prepare themselves for higher degrees in education and for special service in the field of Jewish education. Even non-Jewish students come to learn of the educational progress in the Jewish field.”
Concluding Mr. Chipkin declared: “The shifting of the center of gravity in American Jewish life from attention to the abnormal to interest in the normal from philanthropy to education from dependency to self-support. from inferiority complex to self-respect, from assimilation to self-realization, is a transition process which requires the highest standards of expert knowledge, of specialized training, and of inspired personality of those who will direct and control it. Jews have always demanded high standards of scholarship of their leaders and teachers. Americans expect scientific knowledge of their experts. American Jewvy will therefore, ask for unusually high standards of their Jewish educators and teachers. To the espousal of these standards, the National Council for Jewish Education is devoted itself.”
The extent to which Jewish education, and an appreciation of Jewish values must become a part of Jewish social work was stressed by Dr. John S. Slawson, research director of the Jewish Walfare Federation of Claveland.
“The function of Jewish education is to continue to enrich, on the basis of positive values, the life and the spirit of the Jewish ethnic group, permitting a free intercourse, as a matter of fact, encouraging a free intercourse, between the Jewish group and the dominan American culture for the resultant conditionings that are necessary? Dr. Slawson declared.
The federation is no longer a federation for philanthropy, but becomes a federation for Jewish ethnic group expression. The dependent is no longer explored for purposes of emotional satisfaction, but the cultural tone, in all of its manifestations, of the Jewish group as a whole, becomes the concern of Jewish organized welfare endeavor–a cooperative enterprise on the part of all American Jewry, he stated.
Dr. Alfred Heineberg, chief of the Gynecological Clinic at Jefferson Hospital, Philadelphia, died at his home in Philadelphia. He was fifty years old.
Dr. Heineberg was an unthorise on ##. invennor of a surgical instrument used in that brunch of safence and contributor to medical periodicals. He was assistant professor of gynecology at Jefferson Medical College for many years.
Bids have been asked for the erection of the new building planned for the Young Men’s and Young Women’s Hebrew association of Baltimore Md. The proposed building, designed by Joseph Evans Sp##y, will occupy the former she of old McGoy Hall. It will cost approximately $500,000. The st?e was acquired about a year ago from the Johns Hopicins University.
The Parks and Playgrounds Association, the General Park Association and the Battery Park Association have united in a new citywide organization to be known as the Park Association of New York City, was announced by Nation St?ans Dr., president.
Is will carry out a policy for protection and betterment of existing parks, and will seek to stimulate public and official interest in planning for the park needs of the future.