Birthright Education

The First Day of School - on Nehama's Birthday

September 06, 2016 By: Rabbi Jay Kelman
For thousands of children, not to mention parents, the day after Labour Day marks the unofficial end of summer. The long lazy summer days of camp, vacation, and sleeping in abruptly come to an end as the new school year begins. Car pools, lunch, homework, tests and, most importantly, formal learning become the new norm. During my days as an accountant, the day after Labour Day meant little. No longer did I have the summer off,...
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Tying Tuition to Income!

July 10, 2016 By: Rabbi Jay Kelman
The current model of day school funding where tuition is charged for each and every student is clearly broken. Tuitions have been rising at 2-3 times the level of inflation for years squeezing out the middle class and beyond and leading to declining enrolments and even school closures. While subsidies are available they are generally only provided to those earning under $150,000 a year. While most Canadian families can only dream of earning...
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Loans and Grants

May 10, 2016 By: Rabbi Jay Kelman
I write these words from Israel on the eve of Yom Hazikaron, the saddest day of the year as we remember the 23,447 casualties of war and terrorism; immediately followed by Yom Ha’atzmaut, perhaps the happiest day of the year. This roller coaster of emotions is reflective of Jewish history with its tragedies and moments of triumph. It is in Israel where tomorrow’s Jewish history is being made today. It is only here that Judaism is...
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The Syrian Refugees and The Giving Pledge

January 04, 2016 By: Rabbi Jay Kelman
As Canada begins welcoming 25,000 Syrian refugees, it behooves us to think of the flourishing Jewish community that once existed in Syria. The Jewish world owes a tremendous debt of gratitude to Judy Feld Carr who, at great personal risk, rescued over 3,000 Syrian Jews. They were remnants of a once great and glorious community dating back thousands of years, most of whom had fled in the first half of the twentieth century.    Among...
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The Tuition Crisis: Leaving a Lasting Legacy

November 26, 2015 By: Rabbi Jay Kelman
  Most Canadians in turning 71 get a monetary windfall as they begin to cash in the savings that have accumulated in their RRSP. Having had this money accumulate tax-free for forty or fifty years, and despite knowing that at some point tax would have to paid, people are nonetheless dismayed and even surprised at their large tax bills - in most cases 50% of the RRSP monies received. No wonder an entire industry has developed on how to best...
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