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Request for Applications: Bringing Ayeka Soulful Education to Day Schools

Published by Ayeka
Posted on November 7, 2017

Ayeka: The Center for Soulful Education is the recipient of a four-year grant from the Jim Joseph Foundation to expand Ayeka’s groundbreaking Soulful Professional Development program in up to eight Day Schools in North America. The grant is one of several recently awarded by the Jim Joseph Foundation as part of its Jewish Educator Professional Development Initiative.

  1. Purpose of the Request for Applications (RFA)

The purpose of this RFA is to solicit requests from day school leadership who are interested in transforming their school’s Judaic Studies faculty through Soulful Education training by Ayeka professional staff.

Ayeka was founded by Aryeh Ben David in 2007 to deepen the personal connection between students and Jewish texts. A countless number of educational leaders have lamented to Ayeka that while their students are often intellectually engaged and “learning” the material, often their “hearts are not into it” and they are not deeply and personally connecting with the ideas taught. In response to this crisis in Jewish education, Ayeka developed a replicable pedagogical system which enables educators to make learning Jewish texts not only an intellectual experience, but also personal and spiritual. In short, the Ayeka approach enables teachers and students to bring Jewish wisdom from their minds – to their hearts – to their souls – and into their lives.

After years of research & development exploring how the heart learns differently than the mind and how to evoke the souls of teachers and their students in the classroom, Ayeka developed a 6-step program that is appropriate for all Judaic studies subjects. During the last several years Ayeka has worked with Middle and High School faculty throughout North America in implementing Ayeka’s cutting edge approach to Soulful Education.

  1. Project Description

The goal of this three-year program is for two key Jewish Studies leaders in each school to become proficient and independent in both implementing Soulful Education pedagogy in their classrooms and in coaching current and future staff. Through a series of retreats, onsite coaching sessions, ongoing individual mentoring, and regular virtual conversations for administration and staff, Ayeka will transform the approach to Jewish education in eight schools in North America.

During year one (Fall 2018 – Spring 2019), these school leaders will engage in intensive Soulful Education training with Ayeka, both theory and practice. During year two (Fall 2019- Spring 2020), these leaders will coach other staff members to bring Soulful Education to their teaching and throughout the school. The design of year three will be crafted by the Ayeka and the school leadership together, based on the individual needs of the school after 2 years of Soulful Education.

      3. Proposal Guidelines

Please schedule a preliminary conversation with Aryeh Ben David prior to submitting an application. Please submit your proposal to Ayeka Director, Aryeh Ben David at no later than December 22, 2017.  Please include the following information in your proposal:

School Name

Name of Head of School

Name of Judaic Studies Director

Name of Board President

School Address

Size of student body

Are you interested in bringing Ayeka to work with your Middle School, High School faculty, or both?

Name and job description of School Leader #1

Name and job description of School Leader #2

In 200 words or less, please describe how you see Soulful Education impacting your school community.


If you are aware of another school in your area that is also applying, please note that here:

  1. Timeline

Proposals must be submitted by December 22, 2017.

Schools that are accepted into the program will be notified by January 15, 2018.

  1. Criteria for Selection
  • School professional and lay leadership familiar with and supportive of Ayeka’s mission
  • Two key, respected and influential Judaic Studies faculty members committed to being trained in Soulful Education
  • Stable, cohesive and high functioning Judaic Studies faculty open to integrating Soulful Education into their relationships with students and texts.


  • Schools in similar geographic locations, as well as schools applying as both a Middle and High School, will be given special consideration.
  • Schools selected will be expected to contribute a participation fee.
  • References provided upon request.