Watch Givat Haviva's Executive Director Michal Sella speak at the Knesset Education Committee
On Saturday, January 1, 2022, the GH Givat Haviva Art Gallery will open a joint exhibition inspired by the world of dance and born of dialogue between two artists who met and communicated on social networks.
“Our identity as Arab citizens is not the same as the identity of other Israelis,” he explained. “It’s not the same as the identity of other Palestinians. It’s not the same as the identity of other Arabs. It’s an identity that is emerging to be something completely new, probably moving further and further into more Israelization, but still carrying the weight of Palestinian and Arab identity.”
Michal Sella began her new position as executive director of Givat Haviva only a few weeks before the May conflict triggered by Hamas, a genocidal terrorist group, against Israel spilled over into unprecedented violence between Arab and Jewish Israeli citizens.
The year of activity has begun at Givat Haviva, and the campus is full of students, teachers, staff, people learning spoken Arabic, and visitors to the Art Gallery. Givat Haviva International School (GHIS) began its fourth year by adding tenth grade, expanding its vibrant Jewish, Arab, and international community and becoming a full three-year high school.
Givat Haviva hosted a discussion on the fight against crime in Arab society, with the Director General of the Ministry of Internal Security Tomer Lotan and his bureau, representatives from academia, and activists from civil society organizations.
Givat Haviva's Executive Director, Michal Sella, visited the Rhineland-Palatinate state of Germany, which has supported Givat Haviva and the activities to strengthen Israeli democracy for many years.
When Covid curtailed in-person programming, Givat Haviva developed a virtual format for youth encounters.
School principals and social coordinators are called upon to act in heterogeneous and complex environments, where diverse religious, national, political, gender, and socio-economic groups meet, to resolve conflicts, instill a benign school culture, and impart values of shared society to students.
Building on years of experience with Hebrew Language Enrichment, Givat Haviva has launched a pilot 30-hour teacher training specifically on teaching Hebrew as a second language.
In cooperation with Joint Israel, Givat Haviva delivers training in basic, spoken Arabic to human resource professionals, managers, career development professionals, and others working with the Arab population in Israel.
Recent graduates of Israel’s leading art institutions have great difficulty making the transition from art student to working artist.
In accordance with recommendations by the Committee of Heads of Arab Authorities in Israel and the Executive Committee set up by the government to deal with violence and crime in Arab society, Givat Haviva proposes to set up Mediation and Dialogue Centers in a pilot of 5 Arab municipalities.
In the absence of an integrated educational system in Israel, this program aims to bring Jewish and Arab teachers into each other’s schools. Jewish and Arab schools of relative proximity and similar social character will be paired, and will exchange teachers of English, physical education, and the arts for a semester.
Arab citizens, who make up over 22% of Israel’s population, comprise only 12.2% of public service employees, preponderantly in the health sector.
In line with government mandates for shared society training for educators and with the recommendations drawn up in Givat Haviva’s Roadmap for a Shared Society Program, Givat Haviva delivers shared society training to Jewish and Arab teachers, sparking a connective and transformative process for the teachers themselves, while giving them skills to guide their students through fraught topics of identity and encounters across ethnic lines.
In 2014 Givat Haviva began placing Jewish teachers in Arab schools to teach spoken Hebrew while bringing a modicum of integration to the schools as goodwill representatives of Jewish society.
The Bara’em Hi-Tech program at Givat Haviva gives promising Arab high school students in Israel, many from disadvantaged backgrounds, the opportunity to study computer engineering and technology, and earn credits toward a bachelor’s degree in computer science while still in high school.
Givat Haviva remains the national leader in Jewish-Arab youth encounters, bringing groups from Arab and Jewish schools together for two days of intensive, facilitated encounters for both the students and the educators who accompany them.
For over 20 years Givat Haviva has been offering Through Others Eyes, convening a group of Arab and Jewish youth from the region for a year-long program in which they get to know each other and learn about each other’s lives, using photography as a vehicle to explore and express the complex realities they discover.
Children Teaching Children (CTC), which began in 1987 and has encompassed over 30,000 Arab and Jewish students is a civics study and encounter program that connects Arab and Jewish middle school students and their teachers, and equips them with tools to promote respect and mutual understanding.
The Institute for Arabic Studies, established as part of the Jewish-Arab Center for Peace at Givat Haviva in 1963, is the oldest and the most experienced in the country.
The Givat Haviva International School is in its fourth year of operation, this year adding 25 local Arab and Jewish 10th graders to the hundred 11th and 12th graders from Israel and around the world in the English-speaking boarding school.