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Million Jewish Children in Free World Don’t Receive Jewish Education, Official Reports

A Jewish Agency official reported today that 1.7 million Jewish children of school age in the free world are receiving some sort of Jewish education but over a million others get none. Chaim Finkelstein, head of the Agency’s department of education and culture in the diaspora, said there was a serious shortage of qualified teachers even for the 40 percent of the youngsters who do get a Jewish education.

Mr. Finkelstein said his department supervises 650 schools in 27 countries as well as 700 Hebrew classes for adults. There are about 250 Israeli teachers and principals in Jewish schools abroad but 2,000 are needed, he said. He praised the success of the Chaim Greenberg Teachers Institute in Jerusalem which trains diaspora teachers who return to their home communities. He said most Jewish teachers in Latin America are graduates of the Institute.