The ORT Technology Centre at the ORT Technology Lyceum named after B. Herzel, Chisinau, Moldova
The Tsofia Jewish School in Chisinau (School #22) was established in 1991. The project was a joint initiative of the Ministry of Education of the Republic of Moldova and the Israeli Ministry of Education and Culture. The school’s curriculum combines the educational requirements of Moldova with a Jewish and Hebrew curriculum for all students, from grades 1 to 11. In 2001 the school was named after Benjamin Herzel. In 1995 the city administration granted a two-storied building of the former kindergarten, where the school remains till now.
Today the school has 21 class-groups with total number of pupils about 400, from 1st up to 12th grade (aged 6 to 18 years). The pedagogical team consists of 45 professionals, among whom there are teachers of the first and highest categories, candidates of science, authors of scientific works and articles.
This is a flourishing school with a dedicated and enthusiastic body of staff and students. Consideration and help to others is part of the school’s ethos. Many of the school’s 400 pupils act as volunteers for the Chisinau Jewish Cultural Society, where they assist in distributing aid to the elderly and participate in other communal activities including tending the Jewish cemeteries. Many students have received recognition for their achievements with the award of medals and prizes in various competitions.
The school prepares children for their future lives both as Jews and as members of society at large. For many this will mean aliyah to Israel along with many of Moldova's Jewish population. For others it will mean further study and careers in their country of birth. For all pupils there is a requirement to ensure that they receive an education which is relevant to their needs and which will equip them to go out into the world proudly and with confidence.
Opening of the Technological Centre in September 2001 was made possible through the fundraising and management efforts of the World ORT, and thanking to the generous support of Ronald S. Lauder Foundation, Rochlin Foundation and Women American ORT. The Centre comprises 2 Computer Labs, each equipped with 15 multimedia computers, 2 Resource Labs, Network Centre, and Media Library (within the library). The ORT Technology Centre has the facilities for black and white and colour printing, equipped with a copy machine, a binder and a laminator. Presence of scanners, digital photo- and video cameras, Set of educational LEGO and a microscope allow the student to work on different projects of study and research kinds.
The main tasks solved by the ORT Technology Centre are: delivery of Technology and Information Technology teaching at the Lyceum, information and technical support to the teaching of Jewish subjects (Hebrew, History and Traditions of Jewish people), support to the other subjects teaching, organisation and delivery of training courses for adults (within “Lawson initiative” project), organisation and delivery of training courses and seminars of different content jointly with the Jewish and educational structures of Chisinau and Moldova.
The ORT Technology Centre provides Computer Literacy courses for the beginners, teaching-methodical seminars on use of ICT in different fields of human activities. Such seminars were already participated by leaders of the Jewish community of Moldova, managers of the city education department, teachers from Jewish schools and kindergartens of Chisinau.
The ORT Technology Centre is carrying out an active extra-curricula work. It is difficult to find a vacant place in the centre’s classrooms. The students are publishing a school newspaper Kahol ve Lavan using the school training aids base. In their spare time kids are using the Technology Centre to prepare themselves to studies, learn the basic programming, study the optional course on computer graphics and video technologies.
On August 2002 was created ORT Moldova organisation. ORT Moldova is a member of Union of Jewish Organisations of Chisinau (UJOC) and cooperates with the Israeli Culture Centre, JDC Representative Office in Chisinau, Department of Education, Science, Youth and Sport of Chisinau Municipality.
Since September 2006 there is ORT Vocational Training Centre (Regeneration 2004/Lawson initiative (combined project)) located at the ORT Technology Lyceum named by B.Z.Herzel. The aim of the Vocational Training Centre is to providing professional improvement courses for adult population.
“ORT-Career” VTC includes Computer Literacy Lab, Computer Design Lab and Video-Audio Lab with 30 PC, 2 Multimedia projects, 15 scanners, equipment for video- and audio- processing and edition, color and white-and-black printers; copier, binder, laminator, etc.
In October 2007 project expand its activity out of the Chisinau. Two Consultation Centres were opened in Rybnitsa and Beltsy.