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Friday, May 13, 2011

Yesterday @ Frisch

A brief report on yesterday's special programs at Frisch:

1. The Seniors: Our seniors, and the Ma'ayanot Senior Class who were invited to join us, participated in a presentation of Faces of Israel, a film produced and directed by Amy Oppenheimer (Frisch '03). Ms. Oppenheimer spent a year at Midreshet Lindenbaum before going on to major in International Relations and Jewish Studies at Johns Hopkins and then working in management consulting. Amy has been touring the country presenting her film which thoughtfully explores the Jewishness of The Jewish State: The role of the Rabbanut; questions of synagogue and state; conversion, marriage and divorce; the Masorati and Reform movements in Israel; organizations which are attempting to create a Modern Orthodox version of the Rabbanut, etc. Amy facilitates a wonderful and thought provoking discussion as the audience watches the film. (If you think you'd be interested in having this program at your Shul or organization Amy can be reached at

2. The Juniors: We've been studying Massechet Sanhedrin which focuses on the Jewish judicial system. Rabbi Yona Reiss, a graduate of Yale Law School (and senior editor of the Yale Law Journal) and for ten years director of the Beth Din of America, the largest rabbinical court in this country, met with the eleventh grade to talk to them about the Halakhic and logistical ins and outs of a functioning modern-day Beth Din. The students were fascinated with some of the cases Rabbi Reiss, currently Dean of RIETS (the yeshiva part of Yeshiva u.), presented to them and we were gratified that Rabbi Reiss was very impressed with how much the juniors knew about some of the esoteric issues he discussed.

3. Freshmen, Sophomores & Juniors: Do you know what BDS signifies? Frisch students now do. Each grade heard a superb presentation by Ms. Michele Rojas-Tal of Stand With Us who helped us understand the sophisticated manipulation of public opinion by Israel's enemies and the difference between legitimate criticism of Israel and anti-Semitism masquerading as anti-Zionism and humanitarianism. The BDS Movement = a drive to delegitimize Israel and to launch a worldwide campaign for Boycott/Divestment/Sanctions. Yesterday's sessions are part of The Frisch School's continuing educational initiative to be sure that our students are prepared to be advocates for Israel on the college campus and beyond.

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