New York, NY - Two Beth Tfiloh Dahan Middle School students took the top spots at the Jewish Agency for Israel’s National Bible Contest on Sunday, May 15th. Caleb Gitlitz '21, who won first place, and Ryan Joseph '21, who came in second, were part of Beth Tfiloh’s 21-student contingency—the largest team present—that participated in the Chidon under the guidance of their Judaics teachers, Rabbi Mordechai Abrahams and Rabbi Elie Levi. The BT team competed along with 150 of their peers in grades 6-11 from across the country. As an example of one of the toughest questions from today’s finals, students were asked to list four of Bilam’s statements (that did not contain heavy context clues), from Parshat Balak, in the order that they appear in the Parshah! 

The BT team participants were:
From the class of 2020: Andrew Bean, Eden Brody, Steven Herman, Leah Meyers, Ben Monroe, Yossi Zymelman, Zachary Pearlstone, Selena Shirkin, Eden Shoshan, Sam Sidle, Abbey Susel, Ella Wohlberg, Coby Ziv

From the class of 2021: Tobbi Caplan, Jamie Diamond, Caleb Gitlitz, Leah Goldovsky, Rachel Hackam, Matan Jedwab, Ryan Joseph, Ethan Maydanich

These students qualified for the national test in March, when they took the regional test that posed challenging questions from parts of Sefer Vayikra, Sefer Bamidbar, Sefer Shmuel and the books of Ezra and Nechemya. At the national finals, held at the Manhattan Day School in New York, our students competed with others from across the country. Each student received a certificate congratulating them on being a national finalist, as well as their own Tanach. The two winners also received an additional certificate and book. Caleb will move on to the next round in the International Chidon HaTanach competition, taking place in Israel.
We are very proud of Caleb and Ryan, as well as indeed all our participating students who worked hard since September, and reviewed all 62 chapters at least two or three times!

Photo Credit: David Kabinsky/Chidon