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Reorganization of National Jewish Education Association Announced

A major reorganization of the American Association for Jewish Education, national service agency of the Jewish community in the educational field, is now being worked out, it was reported here yesterday by Philip Lown, outgoing president of the organization at the annual meeting of the board of governors at which Isidor Breslau of Washington was elected national president of the AAJE.

In his presidential report, Mr. Lown told the story of almost two years of negotiations with representatives of the Conservative, Orthodox and Reform religious movements, leading to their formal affiliation with the central agency. He pointed out that the AAJE, which will celebrate the 25th year of its founding at a national conference in December of this year, has been the parent body of central agencies of Jewish education in 43 communities of the country.

“During this time,” he said, “Jewish education has become the primary activity of the community. One of the important developments during this period has been the growth of afternoon schools and all forms of Jewish education under congregational auspices. It is, therefore, necessary to modify the informal relationship that has existed between the AAJE and the three largest congregational bodies, so that we may have their active participation in the shaping of educational policy.

“While all details of the reorganization have not yet been worked out, the three religious groups, through their spokesmen, have pledged their earnest support of this undertaking. Their active involvement, together with the local central agencies and the national leadership of the AAJE, should give us the dynamic instrument with which to cope with the many critical problems that confront us in the areas of manpower, curriculum and continuity in Jewish education.” His report went on to predict that the reorganization will be completed in time for the proposed national conference of Jewish education, which has been set for December 6.

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