HAYIDION The Prizmah Journal

From the Editor

by Dr. Barbara Davis Issue: Teacher Retention & Development

U.S. chooses ‘change’” is the headline on my Internet homepage as I begin to write the introduction to this issue of HaYidion on the day after Election Day. Yet as we all know, change is scary. Nonetheless, change is the fundamental feature of education. The Latin root of the word “education” is “e-ducare” which means “to lead out.” Education always involves change, as we lead our learners out from the known to the unknown, from security to insecurity.

This issue of HaYidion focuses on a kind of change that involves tremendous insecurity: entering the teaching profession, recharging the teaching profession, reinvigorating the teaching professional—specifically within the world of community day school education. The articles that follow come from professionals in the field, researchers, practitioners, and novice teachers themselves. They range from the theoretical to the practical to the personal. All of them are enlightening and you will find in them useful information, ideas, and statistics that will assist you and your schools to make the case for professional development of both new and experienced teachers.

We know that the world we live in today is in a state of flux. The current economic situation will impact us in many ways, probably none of them particularly positive. But as educators, we know that, as King Whitney said, “Change has a considerable psychological impact on the human mind. To the fearful it is threatening because it means that things may get worse. To the hopeful it is encouraging because things may get better. To the confident it is inspiring because the challenge exists to make things better.”

Those of us who work in the field of Jewish community day school education are, by definition, optimistic and confident. As you peruse this issue of HaYidion, we know that you will be inspired to make change work for you, for your schools, for your students, and for the Jewish future. ♦

Dr. Barbara Davis is the Secretary of RAVSAK, Editor of HaYidion and Head of School at the Syracuse Hebrew Day School in Dewitt, NY. Barbara can be reached at shds@twcny.rr.com.

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Teacher Retention & Development

Teachers are the most precious resource of any school. The measure of a great school is its ability to recruit and retain great teachers who know their subject and craft, care deeply about all their students, and are passionately committed to their own development and the school as a community. Here, find guidance for finding, preparing and evaluating teachers, and keeping them happy and productive stakeholders.

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