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Half term round-up from the Informal Jewish Education department

5775 has got off to a flying start at JCoSS with the launch of our very own Mitzvah Challenge – all students need to do is film themselves in the act of fulfilling a mitzvah (a commandment or a good deed) in order to be a part of the newest JCoSS video.  Click here to see some of our teachers and staff members highlighting examples!

Students were also invited to send ‘Sorry’ postcards this year in advance of Yom Kippur. 
The Jewish Ed department became a sorting office as we made sure the cards were delivered to their intended recipients  – both staff and students – in time for the festival.

The theme of mitzvot and doing good in the world was echoed by a very busy week in the JCoSS Succot (yes, 2 Succot were erected at JCoSS this year – one inside and one outside!)    We welcomed all kinds of visitors to our Succot – our friends from Chabad visited with their Arba Minim (4 species) and many students donated and helped pack fruit baskets for needy families in association with Gift.  We were also privileged to welcome guests from 3 different Jewish Care homes to our indoor Succah and were delighted to entertain them with our amazingly talented JCoSS choir and delicious Caterplus sandwiches.  We also had visitors from Tzedek and Yachad in our outdoor Succah who provided much inspiration and food for thought.  Finally we were thrilled to host an interfaith panel with speakers from the Sikh, Muslim and Jewish communities for a Succot themed family education evening.

We were also very excited to welcome representatives of all the Zionist Youth Movements to JCoSS at the start of the year.  We work very closely with the movements to make sure they have plenty of opportunities to promote their summer and Gap Year programmes, as well as giving students a taster of the kind of activities they could be joining in with.  JCoSS is extremely proud to be the only school which welcomes in all of the movements and we are looking forward to an exciting year of programming.

Finally today has seen our first Rosh Chodesh of the year.  Students in Key stage 3 took part in prayer services according to the denomination of their choice and we welcomed over 20 clergy and communal leaders from all the mainstream denominations to school.  Key stages 4 and 5 took part in a special Rosh Chodesh assembly led by Jonathan Wittenberg, the Head of the Masorti Movement.  This year the Rosh Chodesh assemblies will feature senior Rabbis from the Orthodox, Masorti, Reform and Liberal movements as well as prominent speakers from the Board of Deputies and the Israeli Embassy.  It is hugely exciting to be able to welcome such a broad spectrum of truly inspirational leaders to our school through the year and we are looking forward to many more thought-provoking Rosh Chodesh sessions.

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