March 2016
JData Revealed
Amy L. Sales
Amy L. Sales, Project Director

5776/2016 is a leap year in both the Gregorian and Hebrew calendars. With each passing year, our calendars and the astronomical year diverge more and more from each other. But in the leap year, they are once again aligned. The year as we live it as a community resyncs with astronomical calculations. To play with this a bit metaphorically, I would say that at JData we periodically measure the field of Jewish education and publish the results in order to realign beliefs and perceptions with measurements and calculations.

Variations on the Theme of Growth: Jewish Overnight Camps in Summer 2015

Overall, the field of Jewish nonprofit overnight camps is strong, healthy, and growing. Most camps have seen increases in their performance, but others have not. The Summer 2015 data from 160 Jewish nonprofit overnight camps put numbers to this complex picture.

Rabbi Mitchell Cohen Amy Skopp Cooper
JData in Action: Using Data to Support Our Camps and Our Movement

Rabbi Mitchell Cohen, National Director, and Amy Skopp Cooper, National Associate Director, National Ramah Commission

Over the last decade, Ramah has dramatically increased the usage of both quantitative and qualitative data in our movement, both at the individual camp level and across our camps. Our directors have found that data adds great value to decision-making and planning, complementing the "gut feel" that is based on anecdotal evidence and historical experience. We continually look to find new ways to use existing data and to identify additional data that will be useful.

JData conducts a management salary study as part of annual data collection in Jewish nonprofit overnight camps. In 2015-16, 96 camps provided information on the salaries of their top professional and 70 camps provided information on the salaries of the next professional in charge of camp.

Click here to access the full report.
News from the Field
  • Amy Sales's article, "Benchmarking Is Not a Solo Sport," appeared in eJewish Philanthropy (Jan. 11). The article discusses the value of JData's benchmarking project and how it can help Jewish day schools assess their areas of financial strength and potential improvement.
  • FJC Leaders Assembly (March 6-8) is a time for camp professionals, lay leaders, and supporters to learn, share, and network. Nicole Samuel, Senior Research Associate and the JData team member responsible for camp, will be there and happy to speak with you about this year's data and beyond. Contact Nicole to schedule a time to connect.
  • JData's newest sector, Jewish day camp, expanded to national data collection for Summer 2015. The full Summer 2015 report will be available in the coming weeks. The report presents data on the size and shape of the field from across different movements, including JCC Association, National Ramah Commission, and Young Judaea.

JData has embarked on the second year of our day school financial sustainability benchmarking project. The Year 1 results showed schools where they stand vis-a-vis other day schools on key measures related to enrollment, budget, and fundraising.

Year 2 will help schools assess their rate of change on these measures in comparison with that of other schools. To find out about joining the benchmarking project, click here.

Your gift to JData helps ensure that the Jewish community will continue to benefit from JData's data and research services.
JData is operated by Brandeis University with generous support from The AVI CHAI Foundation and JData's stakeholders. The Jim Joseph Foundation was JData's initial funder and lead partner from 2007-2015.
AVI CHAI Foundation Logo Jim Joseph Foundation Logo

JData | Brandeis University

Cohen Center for Modern Jewish Studies
415 South Street | Mailstop 014
Waltham, MA 02453-2728

Contact Us

Ph: 781-736-3941