Learning to live together
The ‘Meitarim’ network was established by Rabbi Michal Melchior in 2001, with the objective of enabling diverse populations on the Jewish – Israeli sequence to live together and to study jointly in an optimal educational climate that allows each and every one to devise their identity. The network assists in establishing and accompanying mixed communities and inclusive educational frameworks.
Living together (Communities)
After its merger with Mirkam, Meitarim accompanies some 25 communities nation-wide.
It assists in the growth of new inclusive communities and professionally accompanies the existing and new ones. The accompaniment includes in-depth processes as well as conflict resolution in the communities. During the accompaniment we provide the community with the tools for dialogue communication management. We help each community reach its own unique decisions and consents through practice of the discourse and dialog culture that will be embedded in the community’s mores.
Meitarim nurtures recognition and joy in the merit of the other. We accompany the communities in developing tools that will grant their members a deep understanding of a variety of worldviews and values, in the belief that the encounter will be mutually beneficial.
Meitarim encourages community members to participate in community life through their development and adaptation of the community organizational structure, development of work and mission teams, and fostering community volunteering.
Meitarim accompanies establishing platforms that enable community members create a cultural life that gives voice to the diversity in an inclusive community.
Studying together (Education)
Today Meitarim accompanies approximates 120 educational institutions that are comprised of all levels – from kindergarten to post-secondary frameworks. The frameworks are scattered throughout the country, from Natur in the Golan Heights to Yeruham in the Negev.
Meitarim believes in the autonomy and uniqueness of each educational setting, so the accompaniment is done through constant dialogue with the school community and staff and accompaniment of the interface with the authorities and the Ministry of Education.
Meitarim has developed a unique pedagogy and dozens of curricula. The ‘Meitarim way’ of studying is experiential, creative and relevant learning that encourages personal interpretation, independent learning and multi-voicing. Meitarim pedagogy encourages students to take responsibility for their lives and those around them, to lead to ‘tikkun olam’.
The ‘Meitarim way’ of education towards listening, dialogue and mutual fertilization is characterized by a movement between maintaining the tradition and cultural baggage that students bring from their parents’ home and the encounter with other traditions and developing complex thinking. Meitarim’s education leads to the creation of a common Jewish being, a Jewish lifestyle and Jewish language – because Judaism belongs to us all.
The Meitarim coordinator’s work in the educational setting includes guiding and training the educational staff, accompanying the parents, writing curriculum tailored to inclusive education and adapting the school curriculum.
Each of the educational institutions constitutes a Jewish learning community, and each community constructs and formulates its own unique vision. What they all have in common is an education that allows for life together, giving room for different identities. Meitarim pedagogy is comprised of experiential, creative and relevant learning of diverse sources and topics from the Jewish, Israeli and universal bookcase.