We are currently writing a report on the current status of Jewish studies in schools and colleges. We would like to survey a range of institutions including professional associations of RE teachers; institutions in the culture and heritage sector; representative bodies of religious communities and research institutions. We hope to identify the obstacles which might prevent students from engaging with Jewish studies courses at university. On the basis of this report, we hope to design activities through which BAJS can support topics related to Jewish studies in schools and colleges.
As part of this report we intend to focus on three key areas:
- Exposure to Jewish studies at schools, the current availability of Jewish studies options as part of the RE or history curriculum and how BAJS could support the work of teachers in Britain and Northern Ireland.
- Jewish studies as a subject which enhances an individual’s employability and how BAJS might support the development of relevant, professional skills which helps students of Jewish studies stand apart from other candidates.
- Cultural literacy and the exposure of pupils to Jewish studies at a community level (e.g. through trips to synagogues, visiting museums or archives) and how BAJS could support this work.
We would welcome feedback or any thoughts you might have on these topics.
We are interested in gathering responses on whether you have any specific recommendations for closing the gap between academic Jewish studies at universities and the teaching of related subjects in schools and colleges.
Have you run outreach and public engagement activities aimed at closing this gap, and if so what were your experiences?
If you would like to contribute to this project or you know someone who would, please contact the current BAJS studentship holder, Susannah Rees (firstname.lastname@example.org) by 14th August.