Did you know it's Melton Recruitment Season in our Northern Hemisphere Schools?
For those of you Meltonians who tend to associate Recruitment Season with the High Holiday festivals, it's time to readjust your Jewish calendar. Pesah is the new launching season.
Just as the ancient Israelites celebrated the first barley harvest at Pesah, some early "planting" and "reaping" has already begun in our Melton schools. See the Recruitment Calendar in the right-hand column contributed by Rabbi Karen Strok, Director of Stephen S. Wise Temple Melton.
To encourage more innovation and excitement around recruitment, Melton Board of Directors Chairman Gordon Zacks is offering four Innovation Awards to the four schools who increase their first-year enrollment most significantly, and a 5th award to the director who demonstrates the most leadership in this area. (View PDF with full details.) These awards were recently announced to our directors and agency heads. It Takes a Shetl (with apologies to Hillary Clinton) to recruit strong, full Melton classes, and we hope everyone will get involved.
Pesah also offers Meltonians another kind of "harvest." We are told that it's this time of year, as we gather around various Seder tables, when Melton students and graduates often feel most grateful for and gratified by their Melton learning. Some participate in or lead their Seders with greater confidence, some are more comfortable with asking questions and creating more of a dialogue at the table, based on their own Melton classes. Seeds of learning are planted all year long, and nurtured by dynamic faculty, devoted directors, and diligent students. The Melton harvest we reap is a significant one: for the individual, the family, and the community.
On behalf of Melton's Board of Directors and staff, I wish all of our Melton network worldwide a meaningful Pesah festival, and a great harvest of Jewish learning.
Judy Mars Kupchan, CEO
By the way, this email was sent through our new Melton Updates newsletter site. For information on using this at your Melton School, please contactAlison Epstein.
Take a Melton Minute
Rabbi Morey Schwartz, Director of Education, offers a message for Pesah.
Seasonal Strategic Recruitment Calendar
DECEMBER: Meet with Communications Department to Plan, Coordinate Online Registration
JANUARY: Meet with Community Leaders, Email Specific Groups in Binder; Send Nomination Letters; Open Early Registration to Some; Facebook following IDC; Personal Calls
FEBRUARY: Advertise “Taste” in Newsletter; Melton Shabbat Dinner followed by Facebook; Student Recommendations; Advisory Board; Online Registration to All; Fliers; Taste Banner; Facebook after Mikveh; Personal Calls
MARCH: Communitywide Email; Newsletter; “Taste of Melton” Before Spring Break; Follow up to “Taste” is Key; Facebook following Taste; Personal Calls; Register for year 2
MAY: Newsletter ad; Banner up; Graduation; Booklet; Facebook following Graduation; Follow Up; Personal Calls
JUNE AND JULY: End of Year Evaluations; Update Website; Challenge of Early Recruitment = withdrawal; Remove banner once classes fill; Submit for Fall Brochure; Newsletter; Welcoming New Students to Ensure Retention; Annual Temple Program Guide
AUGUST: Orientation followed by Facebook; Update Website
SEPTEMBER: Facebook following first day; Make sure binder is organized for following year; observe teachers week 4 – successful recruitment follows a successful program
OCTOBER: Student Satisfaction Surveys with follow up calls to everyone who scores a 7 or below
NOVEMBER: Observations based on Student feedback with meticulous follow-up
Developed by Rabbi Karen Strok, Melton Director, Stephen S. Wise Temple, Los Angeles, CA
IN THE MELTON COMMUNITY
We are sad to announce the upcoming retirement of Debbie Pesses, Melton Director in New Orleans since 2006. Debbie, who knows every Jewish person in New Orleans, has been instrumental in reviving Melton since Hurricane Katrina. Debbie's amazing determination, unlimited energy, and strong people skills helped to build a strong Melton school in a very changed post-Katrina community. We are grateful for her years of service to the JCC and to Melton. Debbie retires after graduation this spring.
8th International Alumni Association Kallah
George Steiner famously claimed that for the Jews, "Our homeland is the text". One could argue that for Israelis and others, our homeland is indeed the text, and the land itself therefore needs to be "read" and studied as such! Certainly Chicago, as one of the great immigrant cities of the United States, offers an opportunity to examine the narratives of Jewish and other immigration waves - and reflect on the "Search for Home" on the national and cultural levels.
Registration continues for the International Alumni Association Kallah scheduled for May 19-21, 2013 in Chicago, Illinois!
There are still a few spaces remaining for this exciting event. Register at www.events.org/MeltonKallah2013. If you have any questions, please email Jody Hyman, JD, Director of Operations & Alumni Liaison, or call her at 847-714-9843 x 308.
Melton teams up with Da'at to administer travel seminars
The Florence Melton School has contracted with Da'at Educational Expeditions to handle the administrative end of our Melton Travel Seminars, including registration and marketing. We have been working very closely with Da'at and are confident that its representatives understand our needs and are committed to helping us grow the Seminars.
To this end, Da'at representatives are planning to visit many of the cities where we have Melton schools and will be in touch with you over the next few months to schedule a visit to share information about the seminars.
We encourage you to welcome these individuals into your Melton community and to invite students, graduates, and local and international alumni association members to participate in the conversation. There are openings for our 2013 seminars! Please encourage your students, graduates and alumni to participate in this incredible experience. For more information, please go to www.meltonseminars.org.
Please be assured that as Director of our Seminars, Haim Aronovitz will continue to create the educational content of the seminars and lead them with our other Melton educators. Da'at plans all of our logistics, which is its strength. Its representatives are great presenters and we're sure they will do a good job of representing a Melton experience in your community. We are sure that together we can make this transition a positive one.
Haim remain available to answer your questions and to work with you to make the seminar experiences exceptional for all our students, and may be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
It takes a village to begin a Melton class... but it's worth the effort!
On Friday, November 30, the first Foundations for Jewish Living class in Overland Park, KS officially began! With 15 eager parents and one captivating teacher, a new cohort of Melton learners started a journey which includes a true-to-Melton text-based curriculum, insights from experts on Jewish parenting, suggested reading lists from the PJ Library and links to the Shalom Sesame website on Jewish master stories and values.
With the support of the Jewish Family Services, the Hyman Brand Hebrew Academy (which owns the Melton franchise in KC), provided local publicity and Melton Director Henri Goettel and veteran Melton instructor Marla Brockman worked tirelessly along with community preschool and day school leadership to recruit for the class. The three students who came to the initial "Taste of Foundations" suggested moving the time and place of the class to take advantage of another activity that drew numbers of preschool parents. They also told their friends and posted messages on Facebook. Soon, a group of three turned into a group of seven, which then doubled in size with parents who were willing to commit time and money for the sake of their own knowledge and for the commitment they have to their families.
Marla Brockman commented, "It is incredibly exciting to teach a class where each question begins with "I've always wanted to learn this..." These young parents want to know and want to share with their families-a very encouraging sign for the future!"
Two parents can already see the benefits of their studies. Beth Sherry says, "I am really enjoying the Foundations class. It is a wonderful opportunity to discuss our Jewish values - where they come from, why they are important, and how we can apply them in our daily lives as parents." Dana Schwartz adds, "The Melton Foundations class has given me the opportunity to learn more about the connection between our faith and parenting. It is a collaborative and supportive environment with participants who share similar family values. My implementation of this content will enable my children to reach adulthood with a stronger Jewish identity, self-esteem, and self-confidence as well as an overall foundation necessary to achieve their dreams."
Florence Melton Leadership Conference convenes in Israel
Melton Directors and staff from six continents and 25 schools worldwide recently convened at the 18th Annual Directors Conference of the Florence Melton School for Adult Jewish Learning in Israel.
The Changing Jewish Landscape was the programmatic theme, and the metaphor of changing landscapes was part of the experience as well, as the Conference started at Hebrew University on Mount Scopus, moved to the Judean Hills in Ein Gedi, and returned to Jerusalem.
Melton Directors learned from the experts, shared new adaptations of Melton best practices, and offered each other strong professional support in challenging times. Highlights of the Conference included a keynote by Dr. Stephen Donshik, learning with Dr. Howie Deitcher, Director of the Florence Melton Institute, and Rabbi Morey Schwartz, Melton Director of Education, as well as presentations by Rabbi Seth Farber of ITIM, and Kelli Brown of Pixel Point press. Haim Aronovitz, Director of Melton Travel Seminars, led memorable on-site learning at Qumran, Ein Gedi, and Vered Yericho.
Innovative thinking and strategic planning were demonstrated by the directors themselves, many of whom were spotlighted during the six-day conference. Marketing, recruitment, faculty development, and community building were all addressed by the talented and creative directors who presented their successes and ideas to their peers. The new Melton Online program was also featured as a innovative direction for the 27-year-old Melton School, as was the Foundations of Jewish Family Living curriculum, designed for parents raising Jewish children.
Melton CEO Judy Mars Kupchan commented on the extraordinary spirit of the conference, saying, "Our directors observe first-hand the transformative quality of Melton learning. Melton is the 'Best of the Best,' and our directors are passionate about sharing that message back home."
Save the date for IDC 2014 in Austin, Texas: January 12-15, 2014!
The Florence Melton School of Adult Jewish Learning is the largest pluralistic adult Jewish education network in the world. With 45 locations in North America, Great Britain, Australia, South Africa, New Zealand and Hong Kong, the Melton School sets the standard for high-quality, text-based, interactive Jewish study. Founded by Florence Zacks Melton with the vision of impacting the destiny of the Jewish people through transformative learning, the Melton School has more than 30,000 graduates worldwide today. The hallmark of the Melton School is its world-class curriculum, which continues to inform and inspire adult learners from all knowledge-levels and backgrounds.
The Florence Melton School of Adult Jewish Learning — Adult Learning for the Wondering Jew.