Too Jewish? Not Jewish Enough?

From the Desk of Susan Weintrob, RAVSAK President

♦ by Susan Weintrob

Living for over two decades in Oklahoma and Indiana, I was asked many times, “Why are you so Jewish?” In those days, I was less observant, less educated and not a Jewish professional. Yet the question persisted.

Few ask why individuals are so rich, so educated or so lucky. Yet, the question about Judaism may not be a bad one to answer. When we ask ourselves why we commit ourselves to Judaism, in whatever form we do, we should include in that question what we do with our Jewishness, just as we ask ourselves what we do with our wealth, our education and our opportunities. Do we welcome and support others? Do we model moral behavior? Do we celebrate our Jewishness? Are we part of the Jewish community?

RAVSAK helps all of us answer these questions with a “yes” by supporting those of us who are professionals in Jewish education, and by reaching out to our trustees and schools. Working with RAVSAK’s Executive Board has been a time of development for both my school and me. It has been a privilege to work with members of our outgoing Executive Committee: Bathea James, president; Jack Sparks, treasurer; Lynn Raviv, past president. I look forward to collaborating with our continuing and new executive board members, as RAVSAK continues its growth from a grass roots organization to an internationally respected network of Jewish professionals and supporters: our continuing exec. members, Bathea James, Dr. Ray Levi, Dr. Barbara Davis, and our new members - Dr. Rennie Wrubel (high school); Rory Paul (Canada); Rachel Keller (Judaic Studies) and Dr. Bob Berk, VP of Finance.

Our new executive board has expanded in important areas to support more schools in more ways. Our new high school division will help teachers and administrators network and collaborate in programs. Our Judaic Studies Executive member will work with Hebrew, Jewish texts and the diverse topics covered under this discipline. Our Canadian division will help our important Canadian schools work together and connect with the schools from the US.

Those of us in educational leadership are called upon to sustain the vision of our schools, support our staff, and always place the students at the center of our daily goals. RAVSAK has created a community of professionals to support each other. I am inspired by each of you and look forward to sharing challenges and success with you over the next two years.

Susan Weintrob is the President of RAVSAK and the Head of School at the Hannah Senesh Community Day School in Brooklyn, NY. Susan can be reached at sweintrob@hannahsenesh.org.
Mitch Flatow
I can’t imagine Jewish day school education without RAVSAK.”
Mitch Flatow, Teacher
Pardes Jewish Day School

News

Jewish high school students from twenty Jewish high schools in the RAVSAK network convened in Kansas City, Missouri to compete in the 2014/5774 RAVSAK Moot Beit Din, a program that applies Jewish law to address a contemporary...[More]
A front page article in the Kansas City Jewish Chronicle on RAVSAK's Moot Beit Din program and Hyman Brand Hebrew Academy's role as host school.[More]
RAVSAK Board Member Dr. N. Shira Brown writes an article in eJewishPhilanthropy on the challenges faced by small Jewish day schools and the benefits of a new online RESHET for small school leaders.[More]
Dr. Marc N. Kramer writes an OpEd in MyJewishLearning.com on special needs inclusivity and the day school field. Learn how day schools are adapting and changing to be more inclusive.[More]

Membership

Members of RAVSAK enjoy many benefits which support the overall work of the school and the professionals who lead them. Find out more about membership benefits and how your school can become a member.

Use our interactive map of member schools to find a Jewish Day School near you.

In addition to serving Jewish community day schools across North America, RAVSAK has a special category of membership for Jewish and educational organizations, consultants and companies which share our vision of excellence in Jewish day school education.