THE RELATION OF GENERAL TO SPECIALLY JEWISH EDUCATION
IN our last year's report, we offered some observations on Hebrew instruction as part of the general education given in our school. Our object was to promote a more correct appreciation of the value for a general education of the feature peculiar to our school. We wished to give the general public an idea of the intimate relationship of Jewish national education to the objectives of a general education for civic life, and to show how greatly the study of the Hebrew language and literature could help to improve the mind of the pupil and prepare him for real life. We were anxious to combat a possible prejudice against the cultivation of this special branch of study as involving a curtailment of the general education which our institution ought to give. We wished to point out how, on the contrary, the introduction of our youth to the language and writings of the Jewish national literature might be conducive to their higher training as men and citizens to a degree which few other subjects of instruction could equal.
We have already in a previous chapter1 mentioned the other side of the question, viz., what relationship the subjects of a general education bear to a specifically Jewish education and what importance they have for it, and we promised to consider this matter later.
An answer to this question, to which we shall devote the following pages, should certainly be of interest to Jews at any rate. Friends of Jewish education might see in all labour spent on instruction in general subjects a sacrifice of the time and energy which should be given to Jewish education. They might sanction such a sacrifice as a necessary concession to the spirit of the age, but they might bewail this necessity and remain anxious about the influence which such a, to their mind, alien subject of study might exercise on the whole future Jewish____________________