Joyce Ajlouny, Director of Ramallah Friends Schools in Palestine, will speak on Sunday, January 29 at 9:45 a.m. about “Educating Toward Peace” at the Quaker Meetinghouse, 219 Court Street. Newtown. The public is invited to attend.
Joyce will be continuing the Quaker Meeting’s series on education. Last week, Newtown Quaker Meeting’s speaker to the adult class was Drew Smith, Director of the Friends Council on Education based in Philadelphia with 78 member Quaker schools in 22 states across the United States.
Joyce Ajlouny will speak about how a unique Friends (Quaker) school in a volatile, conflicted region of the world is helping children find hope for a brighter future, despite living under military occupation.
The Ramallah Friends School in Palestine, pre-K through 12, serves local families by providing their children educational excellence. RFS is the only international Baccalaureate school in Palestine and the only school in Palestine with an inclusive education program serving over 60 students with special needs. Teaching is based on traditional Quaker values: peace, equality, and seeking non-violent solutions to conflict. Using traditional educational techniques with novel approaches, the Ramallah Friends School works to help each student become a caring member of their local community and their world.
Joyce Ajlouny says, “Ramallah Friends School is coeducational, and we make sure we offer our 1,400 students a thorough understanding of resolving conflict through peaceful means.”
Joyce Ajlouny, mother of three, is herself a graduate of Ramallah Friends Schools, with graduate and post-graduate education in the US. As Director of Ramallah Friends Schools, she has overall management of school affairs, including finances, the development of academics, and relations with parents and the community. She also manages fundraising, school facilities development and “most importantly, ensuring that the Quaker ethos of the school is central to the children’s educational experience.” As Joyce says, “It’s quite a job!”
Joyce is currently sharing her time between Ramallah and Maryland. She is focusing on raising funds for the school endowment as well as ensuring sustained support from the Quaker and Alumni communities in US and worldwide. Funds for the student financial aid fund is her top priority as she works hard to ensure RFS remains accessible to all members of the community. Joyce makes periodic trips to Ramallah to ensure proper management of school affairs.
Newtown Friends Meeting co-founded by “Peaceable Kingdom” painter and Quaker minister, Edward Hicks, in 1815, is open to all who wish to attend. Regular First Day Education classes (Sunday School) for all ages begin at 9:45 a.m. and Meeting for Worship begins at11 a.m. Childcare is provided