BREAKING NEWS: In February, Stefani will be attending a solidarity mission trip to Israel for Jewish education professionals organized by the Association of Reform Jewish Educators (ARJE). The goals of the trip are to learn about the situation in Israel firsthand; to volunteer and perform direct acts of service; to comfort and be comforted by the Israeli people; and to bear witness to this moment in history. The trip will also inform the decision-making and planning process for the Shirley Barish Memorial Israel Experience. An important part of the solidarity mission experience will be sharing it – be on the lookout for information about how to follow the trip on social media and about follow-up presentations. More information about the itinerary and trip goals is at Solidarity Mission to Israel The Association of Reform Jewish Educators and HUC School of Education Alumni Association | J² adventures. (j2adventures.com)
Thank you to everyone who attended our parent meeting on Wednesday, December 13, 2023. We understand that this is not only an uncertain time in the world, but also a very busy time in everyone’s lives, and appreciate your making the extra effort to meet in person. While we did not record the meeting, you will find the handouts, including our new Security and Health & Safety Policy documents, as well as a detailed agenda with notes, attached below.
Some key notes and dates:
- With security foremost in our minds, we are continuing to plan to travel this summer. So that you can make alternative arrangements if needed, we will make a definite decision on March 1, 2024, which is a week ahead of the 90-day mark.
We are not making decisions in a vacuum. We are in contact with other major teen Israel tour providers, such as the URJ’s Yallah! Israel and BBYO Passport. They have also opened their registration for summer Israel trips, with cancelation permitted through the end of February.
- Ayelet Tours, our travel provider, has informed us that as of last Tuesday, they are currently running adult group trips to Israel. These are mostly solidarity missions sponsored by Federations, Hadassah, and other organizations. Their biggest concern about group travel, apart from safety, is availability of flights. Right now, only El Al is flying from the U.S. to Israel and flights are very limited. They will need to open up significantly for us to be able to travel safely this summer.
- No one has yet been billed the $500 per student trip deposit (we double-checked with accounting after the meeting). The deposits will be payable through the online registration portal that Ayelet will be setting up for us when our ability to travel is confirmed.
- Once flights become available, we will need to book them very quickly. Please ensure that your child has a passport that is valid through at least January 7, 2025. They will need their passport number to book flights.
- The Israel Trip Release (which includes an acknowledgement of the Code of Conduct), Health History & Examination Form, and Mental Health Questionnaire will be due at the time of online registration. They are provided here for information, and to provide ample time for doctors to complete them.
- We will have a parent/participant meeting on Wednesday, March 20, 2024 during regular class time to discuss the updated itinerary, flight details, and other necessary information.
We look forward to our next update, on March 1. In the meantime, if you have any questions or concerns, please do not hesitate to contact Stefani at email@example.com or 713.529.6389.