Oregon Board of Rabbis/Jewish Federation of Portland Foundation
Teen Israel Experience Letter of Agreement
We are privileged to live in a time in which there is a State of Israel, and visiting Israel is a significant mitzvah and a wonderful opportunity. In order to help more of our young people visit Israel, a merit grant may be awarded to the undersigned student by the Oregon Board of Rabbis/ the Jewish Federation of Portland to provide the student with the opportunity to participate in a program in Israel that is approved by the Oregon Board of Rabbis. The family is responsible for paying any difference in cost between the total cost of the program, including airfare to and from the trip’s point of departure and the grant awarded. Approved programs are defined as existing within the following parameters:
- Main emphasis of the trip is on, and in, Israel
- A substantial study component, including trips to and explanation of historical sites
- The program and its sponsoring organization manifest a respect for religious pluralism
In order to receive this grant the student must fulfill the following:
- The student must attend Religious High School or Hebrew High School during his/her Freshman, Sophomore and Junior years. The student agrees to continue to attend Religious High School or Hebrew High School after the summer Israel trip, through the end of Senior year.
- The student must attend 20 religious services – daily, Shabbat, and/or festival day – in addition to High Holy Day Services, during each of his/her Freshman, Sophomore, and Junior years. Services attended in conjunction with Religious High School are not included in the 20 services. The student agrees to continue this rate of religious service attendance during Senior year. The decision as to whether or not to grant credit for services attended during any given conclave will be made by the student’s Rabbi, but will not exceed 2 for any weekend event. Credit is also given for camp erev Shabbat and Shabbat morning services. This requirement also applies to Senior year.
- The student is to complete 30 hours of approved community service during each of Freshman, Sophomore, Junior and Senior years.
- The student agrees to attend all classes that are considered preparation for the Israel trip and any meetings that take place after the trip.
- The student agrees to refund the scholarship in a timely manner if sent home due to inappropriate behavior, or if Senior year requirements are not met.
- This letter of agreement will act as the first page of the student’s application for this grant. The grant application must include a letter of recommendation from both the student’s Rabbi and Educational Director.
Students are required to attend a minimum of 80% Religious High School or Hebrew High School sessions to receive the maximum grant. Students attending between 65%-79% of Religious School or Hebrew High School sessions will be eligible for a smaller grant. Students who do not have access to weekly religious high school should consult with their rabbi regarding an equivalent course of study. Administration and record keeping of regular class and synagogue attendance and community service hours are the responsibility of each synagogue/school.
In the past, if the student attended a minimum of 80% of Religious High School or Hebrew High School sessions, s/he was awarded a grant not to exceed 4,000 dollars or 80% of the cost of the approved trip to Israel. If the student attended between 65-79% of Religious School or Hebrew High School sessions, s/he was awarded a grant, not to exceed 2,500 dollars or 50% of the cost of the approved trip to Israel. As we have done in the past, we hope to continue providing this same amount of grant.
The student and his/her parent understand that at the time this letter of agreement is signed, the Jewish Federation of Portland and the Oregon Board of Rabbis may not possess the funding necessary to fund all eligible students’ merit grants. Neither the student’s synagogue, the student’s Rabbi, the Jewish Federation of Portland or the Oregon Board of Rabbis shall have any liability to the student or his/her parent if these organizations fail for any reason to fund the student’s merit grant award.
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All signed Letters of Agreement must be received by the Oregon Board of Rabbis from the Congregations no later than December 1 of the student’s 9th grade year.
Confirmation that the student is eligible for the scholarship and will be using it is due no later than March 1 of the student’s junior year. (Other deadlines may apply for a program which does not take place during the summer.)
This document was updated Tevet 5776
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