Mapping Hebrew Education in Public Schools: A Resource for Hebrew Educators

In the past decade, there has been a resurgence in the study of Hebrew in traditional and charter public schools. However, the types of schools teaching Hebrew and the demographics of students studying Hebrew do not resemble those of earlier iterations of public school Hebrew programs that trace back to the early 20th century. Although the majority of Hebrew programs still disproportionately serve Jewish students, many schools in urban and suburban districts across the country are teaching Hebrew to students from diverse racial, religious, linguistic, and ethnic backgrounds. This project set out to take measure of these programs and provide some baseline information about Hebrew teaching in public schools in 2018 by investigating their demographics, instructional approaches, and language learning objectives.

About This Research

Two questions guided this project:

1. What is the current picture of Hebrew instruction in US public schools regardingenrollment, materials, program structures, and teacher demographics?

2. What are the learning goals of Hebrew language programs? What challenges doschools face in reaching these goals?