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GirlPower

Girl Power – It’s Happening in Yerucham!

I did not know anything about Yerucham except that it is located in the Negev and I was blown away by what is happening at several AMIT Schools. After meeting with Tal Ohana, the Deputy Mayor in charge of education, I understand why there is an educational revolution taking place in this peripheral town and why students from outside the town are clamoring to get into AMIT schools. This once sleepy town is attracting many new residents which, in turn, is leading to economic growth and greater opportunities. While there are several AMIT schools including AMIT B’Levav Shalem, a boys High School, which is hitting it out of the park with a 100% Bagrut rate, I want to share some of the amazing things happening at AMIT Midreshet Kamah, a religious girls High School, and Midreshet Be’er. Both exemplify the way AMIT is empowering girls.

Midreshet Be’er is a one year study program, post high school, for religious girls that also prepares them to enter the army. Each girl creates an individual study program and volunteers in the community based on their interests. At Be’er the girls are exposed to many different perspectives through a wide range of teachers. The emphasis is on open learning and exposure to new ideas. The girls also learn by helping in the community where many families are struggling economically and lack a good education. The Midreshet’s philosophy is centered around integrating work and learning which builds the girls self-confidence to prepare them to excel in the military. As I listened to the girls explain why they chose Midreshet Be’er, it was clear to me that they were interested in seeking out new experiences and exploring a larger world. They have great ambition and want to figure out what they want to do and it was clear to me that these girls now feel empowered to achieve their goals.

At AMIT Midreshet Kamah, the girls live their Jewish values every day. They have access to high quality education which is leveling the playing field in this peripheral town. Midreshet Kamah seamlessly incorporates AMIT core goals:  Active Learning, Klal Yisrael, Torah Chaim, while doing their work in Collaborative Study Communities. Each girl chooses an academic track and a creative one. Several girls described their art projects. I will tell you about Yael, who created a project that reflects a very difficult time in her life. Only through her art project was she able to express her true feelings. Yael’s home was destroyed and life became very difficult for her family. Afterwards her parents separated and her mother and brother moved away. She created a multi-media project that tells her very poignant story. For her project, she used a combination of boxes which represents various stages of her home life and created videos that were playing on lap top computers placed inside each box. Before the girls start, they discuss their ideas to develop them more deeply and are challenged to look deeply within themselves. Then they create an art project that expresses something very meaningful in their life. The girls work on the projects for four months and when completed they are exhibited in an art show. Girls come to Midreshet Kamah from all backgrounds. It is a highly desirable school throughout the region because of its holistic approach and reputation for academic excellence. While the school accepts anyone who wishes to attend, 22% of the girls obtain the Excellency Bagrut recognition as compared to 8% for the rest of Israel. Midreshet Kamah is developing strong women and empowering them to become the future leaders in all industries and professions. This school is a role model for “Girl Power.”

Shelley Labiner
Director of Marketing & Communications

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