Teaching in Israel

October 29, 2015 by Hayley Hadassin
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Gabby Oberman, a graduate of Bialik College in Melbourne was 23 when she embarked on a Masa Teaching Fellowship (MITF) in Netanya, Israel.

The MITF program is a prestigious 10 month program that was created by Israel’s Ministry of Education and Masa Israel Journey to address the achievement gap in Israel’s public education system. The program invites talented, English-speaking college graduates to Israel as English teachers’ aides.

Gabby Overman

Gabby Overman

The MITF program is a challenging, rewarding experience for the Fellows, and a vital investment in Israel’s future. To be eligible for the program you do not need to have formal teaching experience or qualifications but you do need to be over the age of 21 and have completed an undergraduate degree.

Oberman’s dream was to become an expatriate ESL (English as a Second Language) teacher and this Masa program provided the perfect opportunity for her to fulfil her professional pursuit: – “I thought I could gain more international experience, be immersed in Israeli culture, hopefully fall in love with the country, perhaps a nice Jewish boy and be offered a wonderful job to stay!” The fellows can choose from six different cities for their fellowship and are placed in a local primary or high school.

Sarit Braver, the ZFA Israel Programs Director says: – “The schools are in low socio economic communities and for many of the kids school is a safe place away from their home environments. The students are proud that the Fellows have chosen to live in their community and teach in their school. The relationship formed between the kids and the fellows is unique. They see the Fellows as ‘big sisters and brothers’ and look forward to their time with them each day as they learn English in fun and creative ways i.e. through popular English songs and performing concerts for their teachers and family.”

The teaching fellows program is ideal for those looking to volunteer or try something new, live abroad or maybe gain some valuable teaching experience. It is also great for those who have considered living in Israel but do not want to formally make Aliyah. For 10 months the fellows live in furnished apartments with people from around the world who are also participating in the MITF program. They live in Israel like locals, they learn Hebrew through formal Ulpan lessons but also from the kids at school.

Oberman spent ten months in Israel and back in Australia she says: – “Now that I’ve returned, I have made it my mission to be even more involved in the Jewish community, which I have been since returning in July. I am studying the Master component of my Diploma which I will finish in November. I am considering my next move, to return to Israel with a working visa, to make Aliyah or to work overseas in another country.”

The program is heavily subsidised by the Israel Government and costs about $US1000 for 10 months including food, accommodation, travel expenses, tours around the country, ulpan lesson and seminars. Fellows also receive a $US1300 flight reimbursement.

Masa Israel Journey has over 200 programs and offer a myriad of opportunities to; volunteer, study abroad, take a gap year or intern with companies that put your skills to use and provide proficiencies sought after in Australia.


One Response to “Teaching in Israel”
  1. Aviva Oberman says:

    A sore point regarding the programme in which Gabby Oberman participated
    was the living accommodation & crowded conditions, which can only be described as abysmal.

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