An Update from Rabbi Cohen, Head of School:
I am working diligently to meet the needs of our students during this unusual situation and to provide classes and schoolwork to keep our students connected to their teachers, their studies, and their peers.
We have changed our primary mode of learning from the classroom to remote learning online. This approach is not new to our students who have had remote classroom teaching in the past with Mrs. Tendler and Mrs. Ehrenkrancz, both of whom teach in Derech Emunah live from Jerusalem!
Our teachers and students are using Google Classroom and Zoom to create an online classroom that makes it possible to have virtual face-to-face connections. Also, student assignments, files, and videos are accessible on a mobile device, tablet, PC, or browser. For the most part, our students are using their school-issued Chromebooks.
Classes are continuing in Chumash, Halacha, Jewish History, Ivrit, Math, Physics, Language Arts, and Civics. Also included in the schedule are one-on-one virtual meetings between each student and their teachers. We even have fitness via Zoom, and Mrs. Chubotin has created an online Art class focusing on drawing.
Each week there have been minor adjustments to the schedule based on student and teacher feedback. We are being creative and flexible.
Teachers have encouraged students to:
Establish their school-day routines, such as what they will do before 9:30 am before classes start
Find a good location to work so they can stay focused
Use their planner to schedule a time for long-term assignments,
Set a time in the evening when school officially ends for the day.
We miss all of our students and are concerned about their health and well-being, as well as their families. I look forward to the day that I will once again greet our students in the morning at the school entry.
Although none of us have experienced a pandemic before, our students, parents, and educators, have quickly risen to the occasion.
We anticipate a Pesach this year like no other Pesach any of us has ever experienced in our lifetime. Many people will sit with immediate family members without guests, and some people will sit alone.
The Rambam would start his Seder each year by telling his family that just as we sit at our Seder table, so do people all around the world. We sit alone, and at the same time, we connect to an entire Nation.
I feel sure that we will come out of this experience with a greater appreciation of our community and each other, and a refined relationship with Hashem.
Devora joins me in wishing you an extraordinary Pesach!