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ORT school saved

by: Leslie Bunder - Last updated: 2007-08-02

British ORT

British ORT

A British ORT supported school in the former Soviet Union which was threatened to be turned into a non-Jewish state school because of planned budget cuts from the Jewish Agency in Israel is to remain a Jewish school.

The Jewish Agency has decided it will continue to help with funding the school in Zaporojie, Ukraine as well as others in the former Soviet Union with not just the money it was planning to reduce, but with additional funds which will total $1m over the next 12 months.

Out of 15 ORT schools, six were feared would be turned into non-Jewish schools from next month including the British ORT supported one.

"We are delighted that the Jewish Agency has increased its commitment to ORT schools in the former Soviet Union and it demonstrates the value of these schools which offer Jewish students the opportunity to study in a pluralistic Jewish environment," said British ORT executive director Ivor Levene.

Under Israel's Heftsiba scheme, support will be given to pay for salaries of Israeli teachers in the schools as well as providing other help to teachers and buses for the schools.

"With this very significant amount of money, we will be able to improve our schools and attract more children by providing transport for Jewish children who live far away from our schools," added World ORT's former Soviet Union representative Avi Ganon.