By Shulamit Wasserstrom
US Jewish schools, like many private educational institutions, are still reeling from the economic crisis in the United States that peaked in 2008. As a result of the challenging financial market, many Jewish parents struggle to pay for private school tuition, and enrollment in private schools is declining. Both secular and religious day schools throughout the country are working to make a place for themselves in the changing face of America’s economy.
Along with financial struggles, the greater US Jewish community is also facing a shift in cultural patterns. According to a 2013 Pew Research study, American Jews are questioning their identities now more than ever, and as a result of assimilation, they are less likely to spend thousands for their children to attend private Jewish day schools. As these schools have less funding and consequently a smaller staff, individual attention for pupils gets sacrificed, as does the variety of courses the schools are able to offer. Many classes outside the core curriculum are being eliminated, and educators are exploring alternative methods.
A new technological trend to combat this phenomenon has entered Jewish education in recent years: Having qualified US teachers work from Israel to teach American children Judaic studies and Hebrew courses over the Internet. Read the rest of the article here.