Brian Barasch, Director of Marketing & Communications
As was shared with the Bernard Zell community earlier this week, Israel education, antisemitism education and a renewed focus on DEIJ through a Jewish lens are all strategic priorities this school year. Recognizing that this work begins with meaningful professional development, our faculty and staff began a four-part educational series after today's dismissal, led by Dr. Rachel Fish, a celebrated academic with 20 years of experience in the fields of Israeli history, Zionist thought and Middle Eastern Studies.
Today’s session focused on the history of antisemitism, including its origins, how it has transformed over time, and how it manifests in our modern society.
Following her presentation, Bernard Zell employees engaged in both small group discussions and Q&A with all members of the faculty and staff. Individuals wrestled with challenging ideas and gained clarity on one of the oldest hatreds and how it can be confronted and combatted.
The next two sessions will go deeper into Israel education including the history of the Jewish state and Arab-Israeli conflicts before employees reconvene after winter break to bring all the previously learned material together in a concluding presentation that examines where we are today.
This work will take place alongside the formation and convening of Communities of Practices— faculty groups that will meet throughout the school year, each focused on a pedagogical application of this knowledge.
More information about this work and about community learning sessions will be shared in the coming weeks.