Join us for a panel and discussion with teens, parents, and educators.
The book of Qohelet, read by the Jewish community each year at Sukkot, calls into question every notion of “meaningful” accomplishment and legacy, and demands that we stop the vain pursuit of making our lives “add up” to something. Our math is all wrong, says Qohelet, so we’d best stop scoring our lives.
Qohelet’s message resonates deeply with the 2009 documentary Race to Nowhere, which tells the story of modern education in America, where the desire for accountability has exploded into a system that is laser-focused on scoring, data, and what it can rank and measure. As teens approach the college application process, many feel a sense of desperation to see that their lives have added up to something that a select group of highly competitive colleges want, creating enormous stress and questions of self-worth.
How can we raise our children to honor the Jewish values of hard work and education while discounting the “one path fits all” orientation of much of pre-college education in America? How can we support our teens in learning deeply, working hard, and finding the pursuits they genuinely love? How can we reorient ourselves as parents to the things that we truly believe make a good life?
We encourage you to watch Race to Nowhere in advance (available for rent on Amazon Prime and Vimeo) as a prelude to the talk. A summary of the film will be provided for those who don;t have time or access. Watch the trailer here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=swjhYnRF3aI+ More... - Less...