Between 1949 and 1968, the board was comprised of representatives from each of the affiliated schools, the United Jewish Welfare Fund, Canadian Jewish Congress Central Region, and members representing the community at large. The BJE Board of Directors was responsible for managing the affairs of the bureau, although the UJWF had final say over budgetary matters and changes to the BJE constitution required the approval of its sponsoring organizations, the UJWF and CJC Central Region. Standing committees were formed to oversee the activities and programs of the bureau. These included the Public Relations Committee, Planning and Capital Repairs Committee, Constitution Committee, Adult Education Committee, Budget and Finance Committee, Publications Committee, Personnel Committee, Youth Education Committee, and School Committee. Given the size of the board of directors, much of the board's routine work -- such as receiving reports from committees and reviewing requests and inquiries from schools -- was delegated to an executive committee comprised of the officers of the board, chairmen of the standing committees, the executive director, and several other members of the board appointed by the committee.
By the mid-1960s, the board had grown to more than 80 members, including the representatives of all affiliated schools. There was a growing perception in the community and within the UJWF that the BJE was no longer an effective body, and had become primarily an agent for the schools (whose representatives might outnumber the representatives of other constituencies in board meetings) and their special interests, rather than an arms-length body representing both the schools and the UJWF. Following an informal review by the UJWF and representatives of the CJC Central Region of the workings of the BJE, the Bureau of Jewish Eeducation was reorganized and renamed the Board of Jewish Education in 1968.
The board was reduced in size to twenty members, appointed by the UJWF, with no less than ten members from the UJWF Board of Directors, including the BJE Chairman and Vice-Chairman. The standing committees of the bureau were eliminated -- including the executive committee -- and were replaced by two permanent committees: the Committee on Pedagogic Matters and the Committee on Fiscal Matters. The Committee on Pedagogic Matters was concerned with issues such as teacher training, teacher certification standards, inter-school programs, and other matters. The Committee on Fiscal Matters was concerned with reviewing school budgets, establishing guidelines for the assessment of tuition fees, and regulating and enforcing a uniform salary scale for teachers in subsidized schools. These committees had the authority to establish sub-committees to carry out some of their responsibilities.
Following the 1975 report of the UJWF Study Committee on Jewish Education, this committee structure was altered to allow for more standing committees reporting directly to the board. An informal executive committee, the BJE Steering Committee, was established by the chairman of the board in the early 1970s, to assist the chairman between meetings of the full board, and to review matters considered by the chairman and executive director to be too sensitive for the full board. This committee became a formal committee of the BJE in 1976, its size and role were expanded in 1978, and in the early 1990s again became the BJE Executive Committee.
In the mid- to late-1990s, following the reports of the BJE Strategic Planning Committee and the Jewish Federation of Greater Toronto Commission on Jewish Education, the board returned to a committee structure similar to that established in 1968, with a Fiscal Committee and Educational Services Committee as the two primary committees and sub-committees reporting to these committees. The number of board members has been increased on several occasions after 1968, with twenty-four active community volunteers sitting on the BJE Board as of 1999. The chair of the BJE Board is appointed by the President of UJA Federation for a two year term. The members of the board are appointed by the chair of the board of the BJE, upon the recommendation of a BJE nominations committee.
The board of directors currently holds at least seven meetings annually, in addition to an annual general meeting and special meetings as required. As of 2006, the major committees on the board include the Fiscal Committee, Educational Services Committee, Education Research Committee, Marketing Committee, Financial Services Committee, Strategic Planning Committee, Tuition Fee Subsidy Guidelines Committee, Affiliation and Compliance Committee, Supplementary School Committee, High School Funding Committee, and Tikun Chaim Committee.
Scope and Content
The series documents the work of the BJE Board of Directors and its executive committee in setting policy for the BJE and overseeing its operations, providing guidance and coordination for Jewish education in Toronto, in allocating funds to schools and monitoring the financial performance of these schools, and in representing the interests of affiliated schools within the UJA Federation of Greater Toronto and its predecessors, the Jewish Federation of Greater Toronto, the Toronto Jewish Congress, and the United Jewish Welfare Fund.
The series contains six sub-series of records relating to the work of the following committees: the Fiscal Committee, Educational Services Committee, the Affiliation Requirements Committee and other committees reviewing affiliation requirements, Guidance and Counselling Steering Committee, the Strategic Planning Committee, and the Board of License and Review.
The series also includes meeting minutes of the board of directors and the executive committee, which were often interfiled, and files of committee minutes and other records whose volume did not warrant establishing separate sub-series -- for example, the Teacher Recruitment Committee, a short-lived ad-hoc committee of the board.