To Greater Washington Parents, Teachers & School Administrators:
The Jewish Community Relations Council of Greater Washington (JCRC) is the public affairs and government relations arm of the local Jewish community, representing over 100 synagogues and Jewish organizations in the region and over 210,000 Jewish individuals in throughout the region.
Since 1938, the JCRC has been engaged in fostering positive interfaith dialogue, promoting tolerance, and enhancing understanding between our minority communities and our local public institutions. Some of the resources we provide for our local school systems include:
- Annually updated Holiday Calendars listing major public and religious observances for planning the upcoming school year, including events for Christian, Jewish, Muslim, Hindu, Buddhist and other faiths. Available in hard copy and electronically, the calendars provide guidance and advice in planning major events and avoiding holiday conflicts.
- Our Guidelines to Religion in Public Schools provide the most recent court guidance on separation of church and state in a practical format to help address educators’ classroom concerns.
- Proud to be Jewish in the Public Schools: A workshop for parents to become best advocates for their students in public schools with briefings from JCRC, the Jewish Social Service Agency (JSSA) and the Partnership for Jewish Life & Learning (PJLL). For those unable to attend in person, view the PROUD TOOLKIT here: our briefing slides, videos of JCRC's briefing on guidelines for religious expression in public schools, JSSA's anti-bullying briefing, PJLL's component on a proud Jewish identity, and Q & A from a recent program; as well as our additional weblinks for school regulations and anti-bullying resources..
- Briefings for Educators’ on Judaism and Jewish Life Cycle Events are conducted in counties throughout our region. These sessions have received excellent feedback from teachers as a stimulating and hands-on opportunities to learn more about another culture and better address the needs of diverse students in their classes. In some instances, educators may receive professional development credit for their effort.
- Public Education Advocacy is an important component of our legislative platform each year on the federal, state and local levels. JCRC welcomes an opportunity to partner with your representatives in Richmond.
- JCRC offers a Holocaust Survivors’ Speakers’ Bureau providing survivors who share their testimony in the classroom. Contact us to make arrangements.
- Assistance in Board of Education reviews of curriculum and text books in Jewish themed-areas as well as participation in educator forums.
It is our belief that through joint cooperative outreach activities, we can reduce the incidence of intolerance and misunderstanding. The JCRC is always available to discuss these and other ways that our community can work to support the public schools that works so hard to meet the needs of our children.