PEJE, OU to Launch Day School Affordability Knowledge Center

July 16, 2012

PEJE, OU COLLABORATE TO LAUNCH THE JEWISH DAY SCHOOL AFFORDABILITY KNOWLEDGE CENTER

The Partnership for Excellence in Jewish Education (PEJE) and the Orthodox Union (OU) have joined forces to establish the new Jewish Day School Affordability Knowledge Center — a clearinghouse devoted to researching, analyzing, and circulating knowledge and noteworthy practices about existing tuition affordability programs and methodologies. The first-ever partnership brings together the strengths and skills of two prominent national organizations, underscoring their mutual concern for the vitality and sustainability of Jewish day schools.

“Communities and day schools seek innovative and effective ways to address tuition affordability. The Jewish Day School Affordability Knowledge Center reflects PEJE’s belief that knowledge and resources reside in practices at the local level,” said Amy Katz, Executive Director of PEJE. “Our partnership, and the expertise and thought leadership our respective organizations bring to the table, is testament to the need for collaboration around today’s major issues, and the value of marshaling the Jewish community’s collective wisdom — with data to back it up.”

Led by Charles Cohen, Esq., and based in Boston at the PEJE offices, the Center will serve as a repository for disseminating a comprehensive body of information about Jewish day school affordability initiatives, ensuring that communities nationwide have access to knowledge and replicable models. A strategic planner with experience building relationships between and among day schools, synagogues, and central education agencies, Cohen recently served as Planning Manager for Jewish Continuity at the Jewish Federation of Greater Pittsburgh, where he worked with local day schools on the “Free Tuition for Transfer Students” program.

“Addressing the Jewish day school affordability challenge is a top priority for the Jewish day school community, and thus for the Orthodox Union,” said Nathan J. Diament, Executive Director of Public Policy for the Orthodox Union. “While we are working to address the issue in a variety of ways, there has been no ‘central address’ for collecting, analyzing, and disseminating information. The Orthodox Union is pleased to be partnering with PEJE to fill this critical gap.”

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The Partnership for Excellence in Jewish Education (PEJE) believes that day schools are essential for fostering an engaged Jewish people for an enduring future. PEJE connects and empowers Jewish day schools and major stakeholders in the Jewish community across the denominational and geographic spectrum and offers unparalleled knowledge and resources to foster financial sustainability and affordability. PEJE is dedicated to impacting the field through bold initiatives to stimulate the core revenue streams of annual campaign, legacy, endowment, and tuition and to broaden the market for day school education.

The Orthodox Union, now in its second century of service to the Jewish community of North America and beyond, represents the fastest growing segment in Jewish life. The OU is a world leader in community and synagogue services, adult education, youth work through NCSY, political action through the IPA (Institute of Public Affairs), and advocacy for persons with disabilities through Yachad and Our Way. Its kosher certification label is the world’s most recognized kosher symbol and can be found on over 600,000 products, manufactured in nearly 8,000 plants, in more than 80 countries around the world.

OU | Enhancing Jewish Life