Ms. Segal and family will move to Israel for prestigious fellowship next year

Rabbi Segal will 'spend as much time as he can' with family while remaining on the job here, board president Larry Gill says

SCHOLAR%3A+Mrs.+Segal+used+the+Lahav+app+to+teach+ninth-grade+Gemara+last+week.+She+is+one+of+only+a+few+women+teaching+Gemara+on+the+West+Coast.
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Ms. Segal and family will move to Israel for prestigious fellowship next year

SCHOLAR: Mrs. Segal used the Lahav app to teach ninth-grade Gemara last week. She is one of only a few women teaching Gemara on the West Coast.

SCHOLAR: Mrs. Segal used the Lahav app to teach ninth-grade Gemara last week. She is one of only a few women teaching Gemara on the West Coast.

Katia Surpin

SCHOLAR: Mrs. Segal used the Lahav app to teach ninth-grade Gemara last week. She is one of only a few women teaching Gemara on the West Coast.

Katia Surpin

Katia Surpin

SCHOLAR: Mrs. Segal used the Lahav app to teach ninth-grade Gemara last week. She is one of only a few women teaching Gemara on the West Coast.

Maayan Waldman, Community Editor

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Judaic studies teacher Ms. Atara Segal, one of the few women to teach Gemara in a Modern Orthodox school and the first to do so at Shalhevet, will take a one-year sabbatical next year to attend the first year of the prestigious Yoatzot Halacha program administered by Nishmat in Israel.

According to an email sent to the community last night by Board President Mr. Larry Gill, Ms. Segal and her four daughters — including sophomore Noa Segal — will live in Israel for one year to accommodate her, and Rabbi Segal will divide his time between Los Angeles and Jerusalem to maintain his role as Head of School.

“Rabbi Segal will spend as much time as he can with his family, while of course continuing in his position as head of school and retaining his role at the forefront of our community,” wrote Mr. Gill in his email.

Ms. Segal will complete the second year of the program, called the Keren Ariel Yoetzot Halacha halachic studies fellowship, in the United States, the e-mail said.  It was not immediately clear whether that meant Los Angeles.

The program trains women for community leadership and to become consultants on women’s halachic issues, particularly those of taharat hamishpacha, which concern marriage and intimacy.

Founded in 1999 by Rabbanit Chana Henkin, the program has now trained 70 women around the world, according to its website, which also says the program chooses fellows on the basis of religious commitment, Talmudic capabilities, and leadership.

The Keren Ariel fellowship is the most intensive program offered.

“Her involvement will surely boost the status and prestige of the program,” Mr. Gill wrote in his e-mail. “We could not be more proud.”

Below is the complete email from Larry Gill.

 

Dear Shalhevet Community,

As supporters of Shalhevet, you understand that one of the most important tenets of the school’s mission lies in its determination to empower young women to maximize their access to, mastery of, and investment in halachik Judaism. From the earliest exploratory meetings to today, the leadership of the school has noted the continuing dearth of opportunities and vehicles in the Modern Orthodox world through which women can claim a more active stake in their Judaism. In addition to the unrealized leadership potential in the women themselves, this gap does massive disservice to the grand Jewish enterprise, which simply cannot afford to forgo in a blithe manner all the talent, vision and leadership that the underutilized world of educated Modern Orthodox women has to offer.

I am genuinely excited to share some news that we believe will further secure Shalhevet’s place at the forefront of the efforts to empower women in the Modern Orthodox world. Our own Atara Segal has been chosen to participate in the prestigious Yoatzot Halacha program administered by Nishmat – The Jeanie Schottenstein Center for Advanced Torah Study for Women. The two-year fellowship is the leading halachik studies program for women today, and the highly competitive program chooses its participants from applicants in Israel and abroad on the basis of Talmudic scholarship, religious commitment, and demonstrated leadership potential. For a more thorough explanation of the program, see the Nishmat website.

The first year of her fellowship will take place in Israel. Ms. Segal will be packing up the kids and spending the year in Israel, and Rabbi Segal will spend as much time as he can with his family, while of course continuing in his position as head of school and retaining his role at the forefront of our community. Ms. Segal will complete the second year of the program in the United States, with the goal of certification as an advisor in Jewish law for issues involving Hilchot Niddah and other issues of women’s health and medicine and halacha.

Those who have spent any time whatsoever with Ms. Segal will understand that her involvement will surely boost the status and prestige of the program. We could not be more proud. I am hard pressed to imagine a more beautiful and powerful example to set before our students – girls and boys – of the importance of life long Torah study and mastery.

Please join me in wishing a heartfelt kol ha’kavod to Ms. Segal on this amazing opportunity. 

Sincerely,

Larry Gill

 

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