JCoSS is a vibrant and dynamic pluralist Jewish environment, where all voices are heard and everyone is invited to engage with a wide range of Jewish experiences through our Informal Jewish Education department. Our aim is that students and staff alike live a Jewish cycle through the weekly, monthly and annual observances and rituals which mark our calendar, and have a positive and hands on experience of as many elements of this as possible. We celebrate all the Jewish festivals as a community and also warmly invite parents and grandparents to participate through our Family Education programme.
Rosh Chodesh (the new month) is celebrated in school with prayer, discussion and reflection and students are encouraged to participate in ways which are meaningful to them. We welcome in Shabbat every week and offer students different ways to engage with the themes and experiences of the Jewish year. Bnei Mitzvah students are also offered help and support with their preparation as well as an annual celebration in school for Year 8, marking their transition into Jewish adulthood.
JCoSS also observes the more recent commemorations and celebrations in the Jewish calendar; marking Yom Ha Shoah, Yom ha Zikaron and Yom HaAtzmaut in school as a whole community. In addition students are offered the opportunity to experience both Poland and Israel with the school, engaging in a meaningful and challenging discourse with themes relating to the 20th Century Jewish experience in Europe and the State of Israel.
We also have a strong tradition of Social Action here at JCoSS, with fundraising and volunteering as the practical manifestation of the core Jewish values of Tzedaka and Tikkun Olam. Students are offered a variety of options to volunteer, raise funds and develop their leadership potential in doing so.
JCoSS is a Jewish school with a strong identity which also actively engages with our multi-cultural society. We are committed to engaging with people of other faiths and students are given opportunities to learn about World Religions, British culture. We regularly offer students the opportunity to engage with representatives of other faiths through our Rosh Chodesh programme mentioned above, our ‘Fables and Bagels’ family education programme, as well as our 6th Form Jewish education programme. We have a good working relationship with the Three Faiths Forum and are constantly seeking new opportunities for our students to learn from and teach peers from other faiths and cultures. We engage with schools and students from a wide range of faiths through the Alan Sennitt leadership programme (Year 10) and are very excited to be twinning our Year 8s with Avanti House (Hindu) school.
We aim to send knowledgeable and passionate Jews out into the world, who have the confidence and experience necessary to make meaningful Jewish choices in their lives and to lead our community forward into the 21st century.