Acing The Test
Boys Town Jerusalem was officially commended by the Israeli Ministry of Education for the school’s impressive percentage of students awarded full matriculation certificates. While the national average among Israeli high schools stands at 50%, Boys Town’s average is 73.5%. The Ministry of Education noted that over the past two consecutive years, the school has shown a marked increase in the number of full matriculation (bagrut in Hebrew) certificates achieved—a rise of 6.9% in 2009 and 17.1% in 2010. “This is undoubtedly an outstanding achievement,” wrote Mr. Avraham Lipshitz, director of the Education Ministry’s Religious Education Division.
Boys Town Jerusalem High School Principal Yossi Cohen is quick to point out that behind these statistics stand tremendously painstaking, resolute efforts to teach and motivate weak students. “As opposed to elite high schools who only admit high achievers, the vast majority of Boys Town students have great difficulties in their studies, frequently due to the disadvantaged backgrounds from which they come,” he noted. “Yet we never give up on even one of them.”
According to Principal Cohen, “There’s no magic secret to our success. It’s all about hard work, on the part of students and teachers alike. From the moment a student enters 7th grade, we make every effort to motivate him to learn. When he gives us a sign that he wants to improve his knowledge, we give him every tool to do so.”
The school currently offers eightsupplementary tutoring groups, meeting each day from 5:00 to 8:00 PM, aimed to help students better understand their lessons and to prepare for their bagrut matriculation exams. “I’m amazed at the number of students who opt to attend these classes,” the principal says. “Many hold down part-time jobs in the evenings as well.
“Every Israeli knows that a full bagrut certificate is essential for entering university and for good jobs,” he stressed. “We constantly drill this into our student’s consciousness. Moreover, we’ve set a very high, demanding academic level for our classes.” Cohen points to Boys Town’s challenging dual-curriculum, which features top-level technological studies plus a full curriculum of Judaic studies. “Boys Town students are given the best of both worlds, to ensure that they become knowledgeable, productive citizens.”
Although Principal Yossi Cohen was pleased with the Education Ministry’s recent commendation, his thoughts were already towards the future. “I’m certain that we’ll continue our surge in bagrut achievements on a national level. Despite the huge hurdles to be overcome, Boys Town students and their teachers are determined to reach excellence!”
The State of Israel
Ministry of Education
Religious Education Division Supervision for High School Education
Mr. Yossi Cohen Principal, Boys Town Jerusalem
Re: Bagrut Matriculation Achievements 2011 (5771)
Bagrut matriculation achievements, like all school-related achievements, provide a means to scrutinize educational performance. Yet in a religious high school, they also prove that it is possible to cultivate a moral, ethical, religious and spiritual world which is no less impressive than the academic achievements that are reached.
Recently, we received an analysis of the results of the 2010 bagrut matriculation exams, including the winter exams of 2011.
The national average for students who are awarded a full matriculation certificate within the religious school network stands at 68.3%.
According to the data we’ve amassed, the number of students from your school who have merited a full matriculation certificate has increased over two consecutive years, at a rate of 6.9% in 2009 and of 17.1% in 2010. Today, the number stands at 73.5%. This is undoubtedly an outstanding achievement, which is a tribute to your vigorous efforts, your allocation of the utmost resources toward the goal of improving student performance, and the proficiency of your administration and staff to continue to inspire students towards even greater heights.
The administration of the Religious Education Division congratulates you on this achievement, and wishes you continued productive and successful work.
Well done! We commend you!
Avraham Lipshitz Director, Religious Education Division
Dasi Be’eri, Head Supervisor