In a separate column “Yidiot Ahronot” wrote the following:
Teachers of the way
By Noga Olmert
The competition “Teacher of the Country” has arrived to the final decision stage. Thirty-three (33) teachers managed to climb to the semi-final stage of the competition that is meant to bring to the public’s attention the standing of the teacher and his immense contribution to society.
The “Teacher of the Country” competition is the initiative of Yediot Ahronot, in partnership with Mifal HaPa’is and the Teachers’ Union, which was formed only 6 months ago. The enormous amount of nominations surprised us too: 5,000 nominations for 3,000 teachers. It was no less surprising to discover that most of the nominations came from students. Thousands of children and teenagers bothered to send recommendations for their teacher. We received recommendations for teachers from all over the country: from big cities to small settlements; from the periphery to the center. Teachers who teach at elementary schools, intermediate levels, and high school. Jewish teachers and Arab, secular and religious. Most of them as a group are excellent teachers who have succeeded, above all difficulties, to project and bring added value to the school and their students.
In a complicated and difficult process, under close supervision from experts from the Center for Technological Education (Matach), a filtering was done of the nominees. The process included an in-depth check into the nominees, telephone interviews with the nominators, with the teachers themselves, and with the principals of their schools. The competition was hard. Along the way we were forced to let go of wonderful teachers in order to make way for ones who were better suited.
Thirty-three teachers made it to the semi-final stage, the stage of preliminary interviews. This week they were interviewed by retired educators, reporters from Yediot Achronot, and experts from Matach. We are talking about a group of quality and extraordinary teachers, who embody in their personalities and professionalism all we want to see in the Israeli educational system. In their interviews, each one told their personal story and the way he/she sees their role as a teacher.
Thirty-three teachers won the top award of “Yediot Books”, a set which includes 5 books from the prestigious series, “With a Book”, as well as a subscription to the website “Koter”, sponsored by Matach.
“This meeting allowed us to meet face to face the people whom until today we learned about their educational achievements, during the filtering process, from students, parents, and principals,” explained Dr. Tali Froiner of Matach. “This meeting also confirmed to us that the correct and worthy nominees have arrived to this stage”.
Following the personal interviews, 10 nominees will be chosen from the 33 at present to go on to the next stage which will decide who will be the five “Teachers of the Country”. The five winners will be chosen by a public board made up of top personages in the fields of education, communication, society, industry, and finance. These are the members of the board: Dr. Meir Bozglo, Aitan Heber, Stef Vartheimer, Rabbi Lautman, Dr. Fadia Nassar-Abu Elhig’a, Shaul Sutnik, Professor Naim Araidi, Ruth Kopinsky, Avraham (Beiga) Shohat, General (sub.) Eliezar Shatran, Meir Shelo, Leah Shkadiel, and Yosi Shareed.
The winners will be announced at a festive ceremony to be held on the 22nd of April at the Teacher’s Union building in the presence of President Shimon Peres. The teachers who are selected will win a ticket to the United States, sponsored by El-Al, a subscription to the encyclopedia YNET, and a prestigious continuing education program in the educational system in the United States, sponsored by the Jewish Agency.
In an email to staff and friends of Nazareth Baptist School, the general director Botrus Mansour wrote : ”we pray that Ruba be among the 5 wining teachers but regardless of the result ,for us -Ruba and her fellow teachers in the Nazareth Baptist School will always be number One.
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