Item ID : 317
Item ID : 317
The TALI (Hebrew acronym for ’Enriched Jewish Studies’) is a unique educational program run by the TALI Education Fund in cooperation with the Ministry of Education. The program is founded on the wish of parents and educators to improve and strengthen Jewish studies in public schools, by enriching the standard school curriculum with additional Jewish and Zionist content. The TALI Education Fund is under the academic auspices of the Schechter Institute of Jewish Studies in Jerusalem.
TALI education strives to form a well rounded personality, in tune with the times but loyal to Jewish tradition, pluralist and humanist, whose world encompasses both Jewish and general cultures.
TALI education was born of an educational venture that began in 1976, when a group of Jerusalemite parents wished to create a new educational framework for their children – one that placed modern Jewish-Israeli identity at its center. This framework was intended to supply an alternative to the existing two educational options of secular and religious. That year the first TALI school opened in the French Hill neighborhood of Jerusalem.
During the first decade after the first school opened, the model was replicated in another ten towns in Israel, turning a local solution into a broader educational initiative for Jewish education on a national level. The founders succeeded in recruiting the Ministry of Education as a partner in their venture, and in 1987 they founded the TALI Education Fund in order to provide monetary and pedagogic assistance to TALI schools.
In the 2012-13 school year, the TALI network of schools encompassed 86 schools and over 120 kindergarten classes, serving close to 45,000 pupils all over Israel.
The ideological roots of TALI education are found in the educational philosophy of Conservative Judaism espoused by the founding parents of the first TALI school. Their educational vision combined getting young children accustomed to fulfilling mitzvot (such as blessings, prayer, mitzvot between human beings) with a critical approach to study of texts at a later age. Their aim was to create a school environment that encouraged a variety of spiritual and religious experiences together with education towards the values of social action and interpersonal relations.
Over the years, as TALI came into contact with a greater variety of populations from different backgrounds, the network arrived at a conscious decision to not be affiliated with any one movement or stream. Instead, it saw itself as a pluralist educational framework, open to many expressions of Jewish identity. It adopted an approach of community identity and sought to offer an alternative to many kinds of communities searching for a middle way between religious Orthodox and secular education that lacked meaningful Jewish content.