Jewish studies in non-Jewish schools
The Christian Democratic Party has hosted a meeting at NSW Parliament House to highlight the importance of retaining Special Religious Education in the public school system.
There is growing concern that SRE may get sidelined out of school time in NSW, and relegated to lunchtimes or before school as has happened in Victoria.
Vic Alhadeff, the CEO of The New South Wales Jewish Board of Deputies attended the meeting along with Catholic Archbishop Anthony Fisher and a broad cross-section of faith and ethnic leaders.
The meeting was chaired by Paul Green MLC and addressed by Premier Gladys Berejiklian and Education Minister Rob Stokes.
Vic Alhadeff told J-Wire: “SRE is a vital program in bringing Jewish Studies and awareness of Jewish issues to the significant percentage of our youth who don’t attend Jewish schools, and Academy BJE is the agency which delivers that essential service. It is reassuring to hear that the NSW Government is committed to ensuring SRE’s place in the public school system.”
Rachele Schonberger, the principal of the Board of Jewish Education which organises Jewish studies in non-Jewish schools in NSW with Jewish students added: “The role of SRE as a means of educating students in public primary schools as to their specific heritage, culture, faith and language must never be prejudiced, diminished or undermined. BJE reaches over 50% of the Jewish students in the school population and it’s absolutely vital that this continues for the survival of a necessary critical mass of this State’s active Jewish community.”