Oct. 2, 2009
I love coffee; therefore at least twice a week I indulge in a cup at Starbucks. Recently, I found an interesting quote on my cup:
"It's relationships, not programs that change children. A great program simply creates the environment for healthy relationships to form between adults and children. Young people thrive when adults care about them on a one-to-one level, and when they also have a sense of belonging to a caring community." -- Bill Milliken (Founder and Vice Chairman of Communities in Schools, author of Tough Love and The Last Dropout).
Here in our Religious School, we are working hard to establish this strong relationship between our teachers and the students (and also their families). Building a community of learners is one of our major goals, and by personally connecting with our students and their needs we will place ourselves on the right path to achieving this goal.
On Nov. 1, Religious School will be closed and our entire faculty (and our Madrichim -- teacher assistants) are going to participate in a special day of learning at Congregation Beth Jacob of Redwood City.
This day will be an opportunity for us to learn about students with special needs, and explore ways to connect with them and create an inclusive environment in our classrooms.
I encourage parents and community members to join us, and become aware and knowledgeable about this important issue. We will have the unique opportunity to learn about resources that the Jewish community provides for families of children with special needs.
Happy Sukkot and Simchat Torah!