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The Association of Jewish Sixthformers “dismayed” by NATFHE boycott

Source: AJ6

May 29th

The Association of Jewish Sixthformers (AJ6) was dismayed to learn that NATFHE Conference passed policy to support boycotts of "Israeli educational institutions or individuals".

Most Sixth-form College teachers are NATFHE members, and AJ6 is concerned about the affects of any boycott on Jewish and Israeli Sixthformers. In particular, partnerships and exchange visits with Israeli schools and colleges may be under threat, and Jewish students who study in Israel during their Gap Years are worried that teachers may refuse to provide them with references for these programmes.

There is also concern that this motion will help legitimise the "silent boycott" of Israel that is already taking place in some schools and colleges. Some school Jewish Societies are banned from discussing Israeli politics or inviting Israeli speakers, and many are apprehensive about arranging Israel-related educational sessions.

Daniel Heller, AJ6’s National Chair (aged 17) said "NATFHE’s policy will discourage interfaith dialogue between youngsters in British schools, as well as damaging the quality of education. Israel is being unfairly targeted".

Nicola Sackwild, AJ6 National Director, said "We hope that teachers don’t use this motion as an excuse to make Jewish and Israeli Sixthformers uncomfortable or limit their freedom of expression. We support the Union of Jewish Students’ work inside NUS to oppose the boycott and build links with the Israeli student movement".

AJ6 is a peer-led Jewish student organisation founded in 1977 to educate and develop Jewish fifth and sixth formers, enabling them to shape Jewish life at school, on campus and in the wider community. AJ6's vision is of an educated and tolerant community, responsible for each other, excited and enriched by their Judaism and inspired by their Youth.

Our links relevent to this article

The Inter-Senate Committee of the Israeli Universities for the defense of Academic Freedom

Prof Steinberg addresses the UK National Postgraduate Committee on the topic of Academic Freedom

A boycott is already on

Israel boycott resurfaces in NATFHE - AWL

NATFHE: Chuck out 198C! - Jon Pike (Engage)

Academic Friends of Israel situation update from 25/5/06

The Peace Vigil Page, the protest against the AUT boycott

Al-Quds University - Hebrew University. Cooperation Agreement

Principles of Palestinian-Israeli Cooperation

National Postgraduate Committee Says: Don't take Academia Hostage

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