On/File: A Continuing Record of People, Groups, Movements and Events Impacting Contemporary Religion

    Source: Emet Classical Academy.

1) Emet Classical Academy is the first Jewish classical school, seeking to “make sense of the West in a Jewish way.” Most classical schools that have been established in recent years have backgrounds in Catholic and Protestant worlds, stressing engagement in foundational texts for Western civilization, learning Latin and Greek, and character formation. Emet, located in New York City, is set to open to 5th through 12th grades in the fall of 2024. Founder Eric Cohen started the school in the belief that Jewish students should be in conversation with classical learning while maintaining “Jewish exceptionalism.” Cohen said that the school has already attracted parents and students disenchanted with secular and public schools “mugged by a culture gone crazy, with intersectional and anti-Semitic” influence and teaching, as well as a concern about a degradation of academic standards. Emet (meaning “truth” in Hebrew) will teach Latin as well as Hebrew and may partner with classical Christian schools, but the school is meant for Jews, accepting students from across the spectrum of Judaism. Like other classical schools, Emet will be low-tech, prohibiting tablets and stressing cursive writing, and will encourage deep reading of both Jewish and classical texts. Cohen said that the school seeks to be not just “countercultural,” but aims to produce leaders who will fight for Western values in society. (Source: Irrefutably Jewish-Unorthodox Podcast, March 12)