JTS to Host Conference in Honor of Seymour Fox, Noted Jewish Educator

Press Contact: Nina Jacobson
Office: (212) 678-8950
Email: nijacobson@jtsa.edu

October 2, 2007, New York, NY

Photo courtesy of the Mandel Foundation

“Pedagogy and Curriculum in Contemporary Jewish Education,” an academic conference in memory of Professor Seymour Fox, z”l, will take place Sunday and Monday, November 11–12, at The Jewish Theological Seminary, 3080 Broadway (at 122nd Street), New York. Conference speakers will include leading educators and scholars in both Jewish and general education.

Sponsored by the William Davidson Graduate School of Jewish Education, the keynote address will be delivered by Professor Lee Shulman, president of the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching. Professor Arnold Eisen, Chancellor of JTS, will also make remarks. The program will also include reflections on Seymour Fox’s life and career by friends and colleagues.

Professor Fox’s legacy in North America includes the generations of scholars of Jewish education who teach in American academic institutions, the focus on curriculum studies and research that he encouraged and helped establish, and the close ties between scholars of Judaica and practitioners of Jewish education that characterized his approach. At JTS, he was dean of the Teachers Institute (the forerunner of The Davidson School), and helped to establish its Melton Research Center for Jewish Education.

Professor Fox received his doctorate in education from the University of Chicago under the supervision of Professor Joseph Schwab and was ordained at JTS, where he enjoyed close connections with some of the world’s leading Jewish scholars, including Professors Saul Lieberman, Abraham Joshua Heschel, and Mordecai Kaplan.

In 1966 Fox moved to Israel to teach at the Hebrew University in Jerusalem and was subsequently named head of its School of Education, a position he held for fourteen years. A close adviser to four ministers of education in Israel, he helped create generations of teachers and scholars through his teaching and leadership.

Working closely with the philanthropist Morton L. Mandel of Cleveland, Professor Fox led the deliberations of the Commission on Jewish Education in North America from 1988 to 1990. Working with the Mandel Foundation, he also helped to create the Council for Initiatives in Jewish Education in North America, the Mandel Leadership Institute in Jerusalem, and a host of initiatives including the Jerusalem Fellows and the School for Educational Leadership in Israel.

The lectures are free and open to the public; there is a fee of $50 for lunch and dinner. RSVPs and photo ID are required. For further information or to register, contact Tyree Perez at (212) 567-8193 or Dr. Ofra Backenroth at (212) 678-8812.

Editors/Reporters: To cover the program or for more information please contact Sherry S. Kirschenbaum in the Department of Communications at (212) 678-8953.

Founded in 1886 as a rabbinical school, The Jewish Theological Seminary today is the academic and spiritual center of Conservative Judaism worldwide, encompassing a world-class library and five schools. JTS trains tomorrow's religious, educational, academic and lay leaders for the Jewish community and beyond.