Over the course of two intensive days, the 22 fellows of Cohort 29 of the Mandel School for Educational Leadership presented their final studies – the fruit of two years of intensive education at the School. Held at the Mandel Foundation’s building in Jerusalem, the event was attended by faculty members of the Mandel school, individual tutors, respondents, senior figures in Israeli education, the fellows of Cohort 30, members of the Mandel community, and other guests.
The event was opened by Danny Bar Giora, director of the Mandel School for Educational Leadership, who wished the fellows every success in their future endeavors. “Not all of you will realize your visions and your dreams tomorrow morning,” he said. “That is completely natural. But as an advocate of long-distance swimming and as someone who enjoys sowing seeds, I want to share with you the thought that not all the seeds that you sowed during your two years here have sprouted and ripened for harvest. That is the way of the world. But I promise you that at some stage in the future, you will be surprised to discover a budding plant that clearly comes from a seed that was planted here at Mandel.”
“I have no doubt that what you take with you from this experience will have an impact in every position you hold and wherever you go,” he continued, “and recommend that you wait for five years before you attempt to answer the question of whether you have been able to realize your dream… Alongside the pride and the pleasure of special days like these, in which we get to enjoy the harvest fruits, I strongly recommend – especially at harvest time – that you remember that our main task is to continue to sow seeds in the future.”
Photos: Naveh Ben Shmuel
The second morning of the event began with a welcome from
Moshe Vigdor, director general of the Mandel Foundation–Israel. He began by thanking the outgoing director of the School, noting that a special event will be held in September to pay tribute to Danny Bar Giora’s leadership of the School over the last decade. “These are not the very final products of your program,” he said to the fellows of Cohort 29 upon the conclusion of their studies at the School, “but part of a process by which we try to translate vision into practice, with the hope that it will produce tangible outcomes in the field. Morton Mandel would always say that he wanted to thank you, the fellows, for leading change that makes Israeli society better for all its citizens, wherever such change is needed, through your ideas and your vision and by implementing the products of your learning.”
The fellows’ learning products address a diverse range of topics, including development of identity in educational spheres; spaces for professional development of staff in education and teaching; study of humanities and ethics-based education; learning in and from nature; complementary education in the community, in parenting, and through the prism of gender; environmental and social improvement in Israel via political and communal channels; and more.