(photo credit: Courtesy)
The Rothschild Foundation will award its 2013 education prize to four
outstanding teachers in Israel next week.
The foundation, also known as
Yad Hanadiv, is dedicated to “creating resources for advancing Israel as a
healthy, vibrant, democratic society committed to Jewish values and equal
opportunity for the benefit of all its inhabitants.”
The Rothschild Prize
in Education in Memory of Max Rowe, worth NIS 160,000, has been awarded every
two years for the past 25 years to educators or groups who have made a
significant contribution in the field of education in Israel. Rowe, a former
chief executive of the organization, worked to advance education in the
The four recipients of the prize, who teach in four different
disciplines and work with diverse populations, are described by the organization
as “outstanding teachers who foster skills of open discussion and discourse”
among their pupils and are “all working to facilitate open and respectful
discourse in their classroom.”
One of the winners, Ran Yashfe, is a
teacher at the School of Transformative Media in Tel Aviv who developed a
communication method utilizing video cameras that facilitates dialogue between
special education students and between at-risk youth in middle and high
Shikma Levi, from the Ilanot School for Special Education in
Nahariya, is being awarded the prize for her efforts to emphasize dialogue and
discussion among her students as basic tools for acquiring life
Labeeb Sirhan, principal of the Alghudran “Heh” elementary school
in the Druse village of Maghar, is another recipient of the prize. Sirhan, who
formulated his educational vision based on the principle of dialogue, developed
innovative tools to boost the sense of belonging and pride among pupils,
teachers and parents.
The final recipient of the prize is Johina Awauda
from the “Alef” elementary school in Kafr Kanna, who created a culture of
democratic discussion and discourse, and applied her vision in educational
activities with her pupils.
Rabbi Jeremy Stavisky, a member of the prize
committee, said picking out the winners was “a difficult task.”
encountered optimistic individuals with glimmers in their eyes, who gave us the
sense that they were carrying the world on their shoulders,” he said.
the end, we chose a special group of four people who, through unending
dedication over the course of many years, created educational frameworks marked
by attentiveness and inclusion, dialogue and acceptance,” he
“In democratic countries, schools have an essential role in
developing the skills of discussion and discourse among the future citizenry,”
the foundation wrote in a statement.
“Teachers are responsible for
instilling basic skills such as the ability to conduct a discussion with people
of disparate opinions in a respectful and tolerant way, and the ability to
present arguments based on facts and to critically analyze them.”
award ceremony, to be attended by Lord Jacob Rothschild and Education Minister
Shai Piron, will take place on Sunday at the Knesset.