Source: The Times of Israel
Rachel Sales, Director of Alumni and Public Relations for Masa Israel, blogs about young professionals in the States who are actually leaving their jobs to join Israel Teaching Fellows (ITF), a 10-month program which places Jewish North American college graduates as volunteer teachers’ aides in Israeli public schools. Through ITF, Jewish young adults not only gain professional experience in Israel, but also make a real impact on Israeli kids, and quite literally, the Jewish state’s future.
In 2011, Masa Israel Journey, a joint venture of the Government of Israel and the Jewish Agency for Israel, together with Israel’s Ministry of Education, launched Israel Teaching Fellows. Israel Teaching Fellows provides exceptional American Jewish college graduates with the opportunity to address Israel’s educational achievement gap and the widespread underperformance of youth in low-income communities on a 10-month English teaching, service learning program.
In the program’s inaugural year (2011-2012), 68 exemplary North American Fellows were chosen to teach English in five communities in Israel. In the program’s second year (2012-2013), the program is expanding to 200 international Fellows.
Following an initial training period, Israel Teaching Fellows live in small groups and teach for a minimum of 20 hours a week in schools. Teaching Fellows choose or design secondary volunteer projects in their communities. Ongoing pedagogical support, ulpan (Hebrew lessons), host families, trips, and other enrichment activities are provided throughout their time in Israel.
Israel Teaching Fellows are Jewish young adults from throughout the United States and other English speaking countries. Israel Teaching Fellows must have completed undergraduate college degrees and must have some experience as educators (formal or informal). They must demonstrate the ability to excel in a challenging, cross-cultural environment and to be immersed in Israeli society.
More information about Israel Teaching Fellows is available at their website.