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Words from the Head of School

Word of the Week

List of 1 news stories.

  • a sea light / an island light

    Some of you may have heard that my family was waylaid coming back from Paris, and a Saturday return became Sunday, then Monday, then finally midnight on Tuesday. I have never been so glad to see the dark shoulders of these hills stretching up to welcome us home, as we dropped down onto 280 South from 101...
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2017-2018 Articles

List of 10 news stories.

  • Becoming Expansive

    Passover is my favorite holiday in the Jewish calendar. It is, probably more so than any other single part of my Jewish experience, responsible for giving me the personal drive to continue the tradition in my adult life, with my own family. A holiday celebrating freedom is a powerful, unique thing, and in my family’s practice it was always steeped in the righteousness and shared struggles of oppressed peoples all over the world...
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  • A Culture of School Safety

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  • A New Generation

    When I was in fifth grade, I attempted to organize a walkout with a couple of close friends, to speak out against what we perceived to be the unjust war the United States was preparing to enter into in Iraq. Walking out was a kind of speech available to us as young people, as students, that could extend beyond the walls of our classroom and our school. We talked with our parents about it; we wrote up petitions; and we spent a week talking to our peers about the plans...
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  • Dispatches from the Field

    I write you this morning from the Omni Hotel in Atlanta, Georgia, site of the 2018 National Association of Independent Schools annual conference. The hotel sprawls into a conference center, and you can walk miles through halls and across bridges without ever stepping foot outside. I am struck, every time I come to such a place, by the architecture of disorientation they seem to exist within; by the odd angles and sightlines that one encounters...
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  • Oh, the Weeks You Will Have!

    In the kitchen here at the Glass household we have a memento hanging on a bulletin board, of a visit I made to Sonia’s second grade class last year. The photograph is of Sonia and me, and it includes the text of my responses to questions about my career choices—why I chose education (to repair the world!), what I hope to do when I retire (read and write), etc. One of the questions was about working in schools, and I shared that I love school because I love to learn, and because every day is different...
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  • Ethics Can’t Be a Side Hustle

    A few weeks ago, at the kindergarten parent social, I got into a discussion with some fellow parents about driverless cars. This is a topic that seems very present to many of us, and increasingly so lately—how ready are we, collectively, for this impending future when the cars do the driving for us. There are familiar lanes to this conversation, by now: why do we feel squeamish about computers when we happily let strangers drive us via Uber or Lyft; the vision of a road trip with a family playing cards in the back of a car, as though on a train; and of course, the ethical dilemmas that such cars provoke...
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  • Do Better

    I had thought to write this week about the recent publication of A Portrait of Bay Area Jewish Life and Communities, a study of Bay Area Judaism. I had thought to tie that portrait to a hilarious moment I had the good fortune to witness in a 7th grade language arts class, where students guessed that the origin of the line “A plague on both your houses” (from Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet, which they are reading) was either Harry Potter or the Torah. I had thought to write about the idea of a community writing and rewriting itself, and how our Brandeis students are shaping that community and its future in real time...
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  • Visible Learning

    Jenny Rinn, Director of Lower School
    Dear Brandeis community,
    When I became director of lower school at Brandeis, I realized that I would experience a learning curve as I assumed a new role in a different educational community. This position would require me to be both leader and learner, and I knew I would need my own teacher for my learning to be purposeful in my leadership...
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  • Soft Skills

    There is a Washington Post education article that has been making the rounds the past month, one that fits within a genre of reportage I think of as, “How to get a job at famous tech company X.” Often there is an element of surprise intended to animate such pieces—i.e., they don’t hire exclusively for coding skills! I have been surprised at how frequently the same truths get trotted out to whirl around Facebook and surprise everyone anew, but perhaps that’s just a commentary on the collective attention span...
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  • Laundry and Lives

    In some ways, what I want to share with you all this week is an extension of what I wrote about last week, in response to Parashat Bo, about the work of not hardening our own hearts, not turning away from injustice. One of the gifts of living and working in the Jewish community is its strong emphasis on lifelong learning, whether that takes the form of new degrees and career paths or the simple act of a group of adults coming together to study (as a crowd of our parents did for our first SEL book club this week, on the work of Julie Lythcott-Haimes)...
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    • Dr. Dan Glass, Head of School

2017-18 Yudcast Episodes

Each week Dr. Glass records Yudcast, a weekly podcast that expands upon his Word of the Week. Click below to listen to the episodes.

Episode 1: "Fanatic Hearts"
Episode 2: "Encased"
Episode 3: "Not in Heaven"
Episode 4: "Processing Units"
Episode 5: "Being and Nothingness"
Episode 6: "Points of Interest"
Episode 7:  "Frames"
Episode 8: "A Work of Art"
Episode 9: "An Age of Questions"
Episode 10: "Always Near Poets"
Episode 11: "Infinite Worlds"
Episode 12: "Radical Empathy and Ethical Leadership"
Episode 13: "Closer to the Falling Away"
Episode 14: "Growing Accustomed"
Episode 15: "Listing"
Episode 16: "Tomorrow, Tomorrow"
Episode 17: "My Heart Would Split"
Episode 18: "Laundry and Lives"
Episode 19: "Visible Learning"
Episode 20: "Do Better"
Episode 21: "Ethics Can't Be a Side Hustle"
Episode 22: "Oh, the Weeks You Will Have!"
Episode 23: "Dispatches from the Field"
Episode 24: "A New Generation"
Episode 25: "Becoming Expansive"
Episode 26: "a sea of light / an island of light"

Want to hear the latest Yudcast on the go? Click below to subscribe to Yudcast through iTunes or the Google Play Store: