4["Melbourne Jewish School", The Argus (Melbourne), Monday 13 March 1876, page 7]

MELBOURNE JEWISH SCHOOL.

The annual distribution of prizes to the pupils of the Melbourne Jewish School took place yesterday morning at the Bourke-street Synagogue. It was intended that the proceedings should have been held in the largest of the spacious and well-ventilated rooms which have just been erected for the use of the school, at a cost of 750, but the attendants of parents and friends was so unexpectedly numerous, that an adjournment had to be made to the Synagogue. Mr. Simeon Cohen, J.P., presided. The reports of the examiners, which were read by the secretary (Mr. Nathaniel Levi), were of the most satisfactory character. Of 136 pupils who presented themselves in English, 90.8 per cent, passed, and of 137 who presented themselves in Hebrew, 90.3 passed. The Chairman said he was informed by the principal, the Rev. Raphael Benjamin, B.A., that, notwithstanding the unusual, perhaps unequalled, extent of the curriculum, the percentage of passes in English exceeded that attained by any other school, so far as he was aware. In 1870, the passes in the Government schools of Great Britain were 70 per cent.; in the state schools of Victoria, 1873, 58 percent.; 1874, 61 per cent.; Melbourne Hebrew School, 1875, 90 per cent. (Great applause.) If any reply was wanted to those of the community who did not subscribe to the school, he thought it would be amply found by looking round on that crowded attendance, and he felt sure that many who had not contributed to its support hitherto would do so in future.

The prizes, which mostly consisted of handsome books, the gifts principally of a large number of gentlemen who take a deep interest in the institution, were then distributed by the chairman as follows:--

SPECIAL PRIZES.

Dux in Hebrew: Jacob Levy. Behaviour: Abraham Woolf and Julia Phillips. Dux in English and University Subjects: Joel Fredman. Arithmetic: Jacob Levy and Reuben Brasch (equal). Map Drawing: Benjamin Benjamin. Needlework: Louisa Fredman. Hebrew: Abraham Davis. English: Albert Coben and Esther Abrahams. Bible History: Jacob Levy. Hebrew (Dux): Jacob Levy. English: Reuben Brasch. Bible History: Edward A. Benjamin. Grammar: Reuben Brasch. Hebrew Translation: Abraham Davis and Joel Fredman. Writing: Albert Cohen and Jane Davis.

OFFICERS' PRIZES.

Geography: Reuben Brasch. Keeping First Place (Class VI.): Reuben Brasch. Keeping First Place (Class V.): Benjamin Benjamin and Jane Davis. Hebrew: Simon Moses. Map Drawing (Class IV.): Samuel Benjamin. Improvement (Class V.): Leopold E. Benjamin and David Sloman. Improvement (Class III.): Abraham Woolf and Sophia Pinkus. Improvement (Class II.): Norman Bentwitch and Joseph Levy. Improvement (Class I.): Albert K. Levy, Pinkus Abrahams, Moses Phillips, Dora Abrahams, Rebecca Davis. Combined Prize (Behaviour): Jane Davis.

SCHOOL PRIZES.

Class V.:Maurice Goldsmith, Louis Blashki, Henry Cantor, Reuben Israel, and Sidney Ellis. Class IV.: Leopold Emanuel Benjamin, Simon Moses, David Sloman, Emanuel Phillips, Maurice Lederman, Philip Cohen, Ellis Levy, Maurice Davis, Solomon Marks, Samuel Benjamin, Solomon Ellis, Rosina Marshall, Rosella Marks, Rosa Bernberg, and Matilda Levy. Class III.: David Hyams, Heonry Burnett, Amelia Cohen, Sophia Pinkus, Anne Abrahams, Bessie Levy, Sarah Phillips, Phoebe Josephson, and Rebecca Marks. Class II.: Joseph Levy, David Davis, Norman Bentwitch, Edward Caspar, Alfred Mendoza, Ada Krakowski, Sarah Phillips, and Ida Lewis. Class I.: Moses Phillips, Albert Edward Levy, Julia Josephson, Dora Abrahams, and Rebecca Davis.

SUNDAY SCHOOL PRIZES. Abraham Davis and Henry Blashki.

The children having sung "Charming May" in a very pleasing manner, promises of prizes to the extent of 35 guineas were read from gentlemen present. The Chairman said the present efficient state of the school, which be considered second to none in the Australian colonies, had to a great extent been brought about by the exertions of the principal, the Rev. Raphael Benjamin. Since he had been amongst them he had done a large amount of work, and as soon as he had more time to devote to the school, he felt sure they would have even more reason to be proud of him and the school. (Applause.) He therefore proposed that a cordial vote of thanks be given to Mr. Benjamin for his assiduous attention to the school during the past year.

Mr. L. MYERS seconded the motion, which was carried by acclamation.

The Rev. R. BENJAMIN, B.A., said he was happy to inform the meeting that during the past year the school had made very great improvement indeed, especially in Hebrew. They were now acting under a system of gradations, and he believed if he received, as hitherto, the cordial and sympathetic support of the executive and of the community, so far as funds were concerned, the school before many years would hold a position of which the Jews of Melbourne would be proud.

Mr. L. Myers proposed, and the Chairman seconded, a hearty vote of thanks to Mr. J. T. Smyth, B.A., C.T., to whose exertions the earlier success of the school was mainly due, and to his assistants.

This having been carried and responded to, a similar compliment was passed to the examiners, the Rev. E. Blaubaum, Messrs. S. Leon, LL.B., and M. Moses, B.A.

The CHAIRMAN announced that Mr. M. Capers had kindly promised to provide all the refreshments needed by the children at a picnic, to be given to them on the 22nd inst., at Brighton, where Mr. J. Black had offered the use of his paddock, and to supply gratis as much milk as the children required. These announcements were received with applause, and the proceedings terminated by the children singing the National Anthem.