Israel is an essential dimension of Jewish identity. In the words of A.J. Heschel, Israel is “an intimate ingredient of Jewish Consciousness, at the core of Jewish history, a vital element of Jewish faith.” At The Toronto Heschel School we nurture in our students a deep attachment to Israel as a unique and special home of the Jewish people. We aspire for our children to regard Israel as a source of creativity, hope, and vitality for the Jewish people, and as an inspiration for the rest the world. We believe that Israel education should instill a love for and commitment to Israel, and provide the tools to engage thoughtfully in discussions about the challenges Israel faces.
The Chair of Israel Engagement supports a vibrant and engaging, arts-integrated approach to Israel education at The Toronto Heschel School. Through exposure to Israeli music, film and videos, students find compelling entry-points into the richness of life in Israel. Through our Hebrew immersion approach, we teach a love for the Hebrew language, which carries the treasures of Israeli and Jewish experiences.
Through the support of the Chair of Israel Engagement, we are able to attract and retain the best educators. We place a premium on hiring Israeli and bilingual educators who bring personal commitment and experience to our rich Hebrew and Israeli culture programs. The Chair supports the high level of training and professional development that differentiates our Israel education program.
Israel education is most meaningful when there is a personal connection. A core component of our Israel education program is our shinshinim program. Each year, we welcome two young Israeli emissaries into our community to teach our children. Students learn about Israel through their eyes and develop personal connections that can last a lifetime. The Chair of Israel Engagement supports the shinshinim program and enables us to provide training to integrate the shinshinim into our unique school culture and vision.