Danes Play Host to American Founders of the Denmark School in Jerusalem
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Danes Play Host to American Founders of the Denmark School in Jerusalem

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The Danish capital played host today to eight American founders of the Denmark High School in Jerusalem. They arrived here to pay tribute to the Royal Family and the Danish people on the 25th anniversary of the rescue of nearly all of Denmark’s 8,000 Jewish citizens from deportation by the Nazis. The group of donors was headed by Charles J. Bensley, of New York, president of the United Jewish Appeal’s Israel Education Fund, which is sponsoring the new school. He will present a golden key to the school to Princess Margrethe and Prince Henrik at Christiansborg Palace on Oct. 11. The delegation will also participate in the dedication of Israel Square in the center of Copenhagen, a counterpart of Copenhagen Square in Jerusalem.

The Denmark School will be the largest of 50 schools established in Israel by the UJA’s Israel Education Fund in the past four years. It is expected to open in September, 1969 and will provide academic and vocational courses for an eventual student body of 1,000.

Mr. Bensley, an adviser to the United States Secretary of Health, Education and Welfare, said the new school was “specifically designed to attract and train children from relatively disadvantaged families who came to Israel from the Moslem lands of North Africa and Asia.” He said it would be carrying out “the great democratic ideals which the free people of the world, especially the valiant people of Denmark, have always maintained and defended.”

In October, 1943, Danish citizens, under the eyes of the Gestapo and the German Army. managed to hide nearly 8,000 of their Jewish fellow-citizens and transport them in small boats to safety in Sweden. Their escape was arranged when Danish authorities learned of Nazi plans to deport all of Denmark’s Jews.

Founding Funders

The digitization of the JTA Archive would not have been possible without the generous support of the following donors:
  • The Gottesman Fund
  • Righteous Persons Foundation
  • Charles H. Revson Foundation
  • Elisa Spungen Bildner and Robert Bildner, in honor of Norma Spungen
  • George S. Blumenthal
  • Grace and Scott Offen Charitable Fund