||Title: Einladungsschrift zu der am 17., 18.,19. und 20. März stattsinbenden offentlichen Prüfung der Bürger – und Realschule der Israelitischen Gemeinde.
Dr. Stern ( 1812-1867) is reporting here on the Jewish schools in Frankfurt am Main and what they were teaching. Sigismund Stern, one of the most radical of the Reformers, maintaining that it was essential for Judaism to recognize, "Christianity as a religion which has its necessary and historically valid existence outside of Judaism...
Sigismund Stern (1812-1867) German teacher and leader of the Berlin Reform movement. After studying philology, in 1835 Stern succeeded I. M. Jost as headmaster of the Berlin Jewish boys' school. In 1845 he gave a series of lectures on the tasks of Judaism which aroused wide interest and controversy. He wished to bring about a revival of religious life, waking it from its then current lethargy, which he felt was caused by the contradictions and frustrations faced by Jews in the modern world. Following his proposal calling for the erection of a "German-Jewish church," leading classes of Berlin Jewry responded by forming an "Association for Reform in Judaism, " in which Stern played a central role. Contending that Judaism must free itself from its national heritage, he initiated radical reforms and the separate organization of the reformers in Berlin. In 1848, after standing unsuccessfully as candidate for that year's National Assembly, Stern accepted the directorship of the Frankfort on the Main Philanthropin Jewish School. He enlarged the institution, raised its academic standards, and introduced pedagogic (but not religious) innovations, which made him an acknowledged leader of the German methods.
The Philanthropin High school of the Hebrew community of Frankfort-on-the-Main. The institution, which has been in existence since Jan. 1, 1804, was founded by Siegmund Geisenheimer conjointly with a number of friends as a place of instruction and education for those in whom a desire for learning had been awakened by the movement inaugurated by Moses Mendelssohn. Before a special school was opened voluntary contributors had defrayed the cost of the education of a number of poor children who were sent to the newly founded model school in Frankfort. The Philanthropin became an independent school on Jan. 1, 1806, since which date pupils who were been able to pay for instruction have also been admitted, and the attendance rapidly increased.
In the days of Primate (later Grand Duke) Carl Dalberg (1806–13) the young school was subventioned by the state, besides receiving the income from various legacies bequeathed to the Jewish community. A girls' school was added in 1810; in 1813 there were five classes for boys and four for girls, and the Philanthropin was included among the public schools of the grand duchy of Frankfort as "Bürger- und Realschule," attached to which was an elementary school. In 1854 the elementary school was abandoned; but the institution continued to be known until 1889 as "Real- und Volksschule der Israelitischen Gemeinde." In 1813 the Jewish community acquired the former electoral "Compostell" and presented it for a schoolhouse to the Philanthropin.
When the Vienna Congress restored Frankfort's independence the school got into financial difficulties because the subvention and the income from legacies were withdrawn from it. The latter were restored to the school by a resolution of the Senate on Feb. 13, 1819.
On Nov. 13, 1845, the school took possession of the imposing building which had been erected at the expense of the community. In 1860 a hall was built, containing a gymnasium. This was replaced in 1881–82 by a new one with two additional floors containing class-rooms and apartments for the director.
When Frankfort became a part of Prussia the school system of the city changed. By a ministerial rescript dated June 25, 1867, the Philanthropin was recognized as a "Realschule" of the second class, entitling its graduates to perform their military service in one year.
The principals of the school have been: Michael Hess (1806–55); Sigismund Stern (1855–67); Hermann Baerwald (1868–99); and Salo Adler, the present principal (since 1900). Of the prominent teachers who have labored at the Philanthropin may be mentioned: Joseph Johlson (1813–30), Michael Creizenach (1825–42), I. M. Jost (1835–60), Jacob Auerbach (1843–79), Lazarus Geiger (1861–70), andthe three mathematicians Gustav Wertheim, Emil Strauss, and Hermann Dobriner. When founded, the Philanthropin was independent of the Jewish community, but since March 18, 1843, it has been under communal supervision. According to an agreement between the institution and the board of education, the school is "an institution of the Jewish community, and is supported at the community's expense." A number of bequests and gifts for the provision of scholarships, etc., have been made. The school celebrated its centenary on April 15, 1904, on which occasion former pupils presented it with an endowment of more than 100,000 marks.