Jewish Early Childhood Education Leadership Institute (JECELI)

Jewish Early Childhood Education Leadership Institute (JECELI)

JECELI engages select new and aspiring directors in intensive Jewish learning, reflective practice, leadership development, and community building. Jewish learning provides the foundation for all of the areas that are studied. Participants work on discovering meaning in texts and ritual; understanding leadership and relationships through Jewish perspectives; fostering spiritual development; integrating Israel into the life of the early childhood program; and facilitating the development of identity. JECELI is a collaboration between The Jewish Theological Seminary and Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion (HUC), in consultation with Bank Street College of Education and with the generous support of the Jim Joseph Foundation.

JECELI is founded on the premise that Jewish early childhood programs can have a powerful impact on the future of the Jewish community at large. Upon completion of the program, participants are expected to be able to:

  • Apply Jewish perspectives on learning, interpersonal interactions, and leadership, and to use these perspectives to consistently inform their work
  • Model reflective practice through the dependable use of observation and dialogue to negotiate change
  • Use leadership knowledge, skills, and protocols to set clear and appropriate expectations for curriculum development, particularly in the area of Jewish studies
  • Negotiate and manage complex relationships at all organizational levels in order to create a collaborative program culture
  • Make ongoing contributions to the field of Jewish early childhood education through advocacy and through their own ongoing learning

Learn more about our areas of study and program structure.

JECELI's third cohort application (PDF)

For more information, please contact Lyndall Miller, director, at