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Records of the Jewish Education Committee

Identifier: RG 592

Scope and Content Note

The records in this collection consist of JEC administrative records, including correspondence, circulars, reports, minutes, questionnaires, exams, surveys, application forms, notes, posters, catalogs, press releases, dramatic sketches, articles, pamphlets, bibliographies, organizational calendars, memos, and publications relating to the organizational activities of the JEC. There are also pedagogic resources provided by the JEC to Jewish schools and teachers, including reports; tests; materials relating to conferences, in-service courses and seminars, teacher placements, and teacher licensing; art, music, drama, and dance curriculums; documents relating to contests, awards and exhibitions; publications put out by the JEC; film strips and audio-visual items; public relations documents; and parent and adult educational materials.

There are also items from affiliated organizations, including the National Council for Jewish Education and the American Association for Jewish Education, the National Organization of Jewish Educators, National Curriculum Research Institute, World Union for Jewish Education, World Conference of Jewish Organizations, the Jewish Agency, Jewish National Fund, Theodore Herzl Institute, Alliance Israelite Universelle, Jewish Teachers Seminary and People's University, Jewish Braille Institute of America, the Jewish Book Council of America, United Synagogue, New York Federation of Reform Religious Schools, Associated Hebrew Schools of Westchester, East New York Talmud Torah Council, and various other regional organizations.


  • 1939-1972

Language of Materials

The collection is in English with some Yiddish and Hebrew.

Access Restrictions

Permission to use the collection must be obtained from the YIVO Archivist.

Use Restrictions

Permission to publish part or parts of the collection must be obtained from the YIVO Archives. For more information, contact:

YIVO Institute for Jewish Research, Center for Jewish History, 15 West 16th Street, New York, NY 10011


Historical Note

The Jewish Education Committee (JEC) was organized in June 1939 in order to coordinate a wide variety of administrative, educational and financial services provided to the various Jewish school systems in New York. The original support came from a $1,000,000 donation by the Michael Friedsam Foundation for Jewish Education in New York City. The Federation of Jewish Philanthropies also turned over to the JEC the administration of funds previously granted directly to individual Jewish educational institutions, such as Talmud Torahs. Two predecessor organizations, the Jewish Education Association and the Bureau of Jewish Education, merged with the JEC soon after its founding. The JEC helped to recruit children for Orthodox, Reform, Conservative, and Yiddish secular schools, educated Jewish teachers and staff members in Jewish educational facilities, created programming and maintained a library of educational reference materials for Jewish schools, helped fund Jewish schools through grants and scholarships, and helped children be able to afford tuition for schools. It also aimed to inform the Jewish parent about the status of Jewish education in New York City and to encourage them to get involved to better the school systems and to increase enrollment.

The eight departments of the JEC offered financial aid to individual schools; provided consultant services; helped to develop curricula, including experimental educational activities; provided aid and education to Jewish teachers; put out publications, including World Over, a children’s magazine that helped explain world events and how they affected the Jewish Community as well as a Hebrew magazine and textbooks, song books, and arts and crafts guides; oversaw youth education; compiled statistics and research; aided community relations; and maintained teacher services such as teacher’s group insurance. The JEC also maintained the Board of License for Hebrew Teachers, as well as teachers’ training institutions and the Hebrew Teachers Union. The JEC Department of Statistics published studies in the field of Jewish education. A committee of laymen assumed responsibility for the continuous functioning of the organization. Administrative responsibilities were delegated to professionals headed by an Executive Director and a staff of consultants, field workers and clerks. Executive Directors during the period 1939-1969 included: Dr. Alexander Dushkin, Dr. Israel Chipkin, and Dr. Azriel Eisenberg. In 1970 the Jewish Education Committee changed its name to its current name, The Board of Jewish Education of Greater New York.


7.5 Linear Feet


This collection contains the administrative records of Jewish Education Committee as well as materials from the National Council for Jewish Education and the American Association for Jewish Education. The Jewish Education Committee was a Jewish educational organization in New York concerned with coordination of educational activities as well as development of educational resources for the Jewish secular school systems in the U.S. and was organized in June 1939. Materials include correspondence, memoranda, minutes, reports, conference materials, surveys, and publications.


The materials in this collection are arranged either by format, subject or organization and then usually chronologically. Items for which no language is given are mainly in English. The collection is organized in four series, some of which have been further subdivided into subseries and subsubseries.

Acquisition Information

The Jewish Education Committee and Yudel Mark donated the collection to the YIVO Archives in the 1960s.

Related Material

The YIVO and AJHS Libraries have several JEC publications, including copies of World Over magazine, the JEC Bulletin and educational pamphlets, as well as curriculum materials and books by many of the individuals associated with the JEC, including Louis Ruffman, Samuel Citron, Alexander Dushkin, and Azriel Eisenberg. The AJHS Archives has the Samuel Citron Papers, P-930, and the Records of Board of Jewish Education (New York, NY), I-307, and the YIVO Archives has the Papers of Yudel Mark, RG 540.

Separated Material

There is no information about materials that are associated by provenance to the described materials that have been physically separated or removed.

Processing information

The collection was originally processed in 1979, with the assistance of a grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities. Additional processing was completed in 2012.

Guide to the Records of the Jewish Education Committee 1939-1972 RG 592
Processed by YIVO staff. Additional processing by Rachel S. Harrison as part of the Leon Levy Archival Processing Initiative, made possible by the Leon Levy Foundation.
Language of description
Script of description
Language of description note
Description is in English.

Repository Details

Part of the YIVO Institute for Jewish Research Repository

15 West 16th Street
New York NY 10011 United States