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Prizmah Center for Jewish Day Schools and Heads of School Response to Parkland


We come from a prophetic tradition that teaches a moral responsibility to pursue justice. We are called to speak, and to speak publicly, when our children are being put at emotional and physical risk. As leaders in our communities, as Jews of conscience, and most of all, as those who have taken on the sacred task of educating and protecting our children, we feel compelled to join our nation's youth to demand action that will increase safety in all of our schools.

We are the heads of Jewish day schools that span denominational and geographical lines, educating students from early childhood through high school. We raise our voices as one to urge action and common sense legislation that will protect the students, teachers, and staff in our schools. There are many issues about which reasonable people can disagree, but as we listen to the voices of so many passionate and talented young people who are stepping forward to demand the right to be educated in safety, we know that we can no longer see this issue as a debate.

Instead, we must heed their voices as no less than a call to action. We call upon our President and legislative leaders, at both the federal and state levels of government, and our fellow citizens to work together now to enact common sense legislation that addresses all factors contributing to a safe and secure educational community, including restrictions and safeguards related to guns. We recognize that there is no perfect solution to the plague of school violence that has so tragically become the "new normal." But that is no excuse not to act.

Our tradition teaches:

לא עליך המלאכה לגמור, ולא אתה בן חורין לבטל ממנה

"You are not expected to complete the task, neither are you free to avoid it." (Ethics of the Fathers 2:16) and

צדק צדק תרדוף

"Justice, justice shall you pursue." (Deuteronomy 16:20)

We must take up the task of justice now, and we stand together committed to move towards a future in which no child, teacher, or staff member is afraid to come to school.

Prizmah: Center for Jewish Day Schools, Paul Bernstein, CEO

Read the original letter on Prizmah.org

Heads of Jewish Day Schools (in alphabetical order)

Debra Abolafia, N. E. Miles Jewish Day School, Birmingham, Alabama
David Abusch-Magder, The Epstein School, Atlanta, GA
Steven Albert, Portland Jewish Academy, Portland, OR
Nora Anderson, Carmel Academy, Greenwich, CT
Marc Baker, Gann Academy, Waltham, MA
Uzi Beer, JEC Lower & Middle Schools, Elizabeth, NJ
Shoshana Bilavsky, Seattle Jewish Community School, Seattle, WA
Yoni Binus, Heilicher Minneapolis Jewish Day School, Minneapolis, MN
Randy Boroff, Gross Schechter Day School, Pepper Pike, OH
Deborah Bromberg Seltzer, Lander-Grinspoon Academy, Northampton, MA
Jodi Bruce, Lehrman Community Day School, Miami Beach, FL
Shireen Butman, Silverstein Hebrew Academy, Great Neck, NY
Daniel Ceaser, Hershorin Schiff Community Day School, Sarasota, FL
Sam Chestnut, The Lippman School, Akron, OH
Gerri Chizeck, Levey Day School, Portland, ME
Brandon Cohen, Brawerman Elementary School of Wilshire Boulevard Temple, Los Angeles, CA
Richard Cuenca, David Posnack Jewish Day School, Davie, FL
Ariela Dubler, Abraham Joshua Heschel School, New York, NY
Adam Englander, Katz Hillel Day School of Boca Raton, Boca Raton, FL
Jason Feld, Northwest Yeshiva High School, Seattle, WA
Lisa Feldman, Weizmann Day School, Pasadena, CA
Karen Feller, Donna Klein Jewish Academy (Retired), Boca Raton, FL
Josef Fradkin, Chabad Hebrew Academy, San Diego, CA
Aaron Frank, Kinneret Day School, Riverdale, NY
Ellen Frank, Lander-Grinspoon Academy, Northampton, MA
Tony Frank, Rochelle Zell Jewish High School, Deerfield, IL
Steven Freedman, Hillel Day School, Farmington Hills, MI
Ruth Gafni, Solomon Schechter Day School of Bergen County, New Milford, NJ
Hamutal Gavish, The Jewish Day School of Metropolitan Seattle, Bellevue, WA
Barbara Gereboff, Ronald C. Wornick Jewish Day School, Foster City, CA
Dan Glass, The Brandeis School of San Francisco, San Francisco, CA
Tracie Glazer, Hillel Community Day School, Rochester, NY
Amy Gold, Arthur J. Epstein Hillel School, Marblehead, MA
Joshua Gol, Hebrew Academy of the Five Towns and Rockaway, Lawrence, NY
Cyndy Goldberg, Hebrew Academy of the Five Towns and Rockaway, Lawrence, NY
Peter Gordon, Pardes Jewish Day School, Scottsdale, AZ
Judy Groner, Perelman Jewish Day School, Philadelphia, PA
Avi Halzel, Denver Jewish Day School, Denver, CO
Joy Hammer, Hebrew Academy of the Five Towns and Rockaway, Lawrence, NY
Raymond Harari, Yeshivah of Flatbush, Joel Braverman High School, Brooklyn, NY
Tully Harcsztark, SAR High School, Riverdale, NY
Edward Harwitz, The Weber School, Atlanta, GA
Chaim Heller, San Diego Jewish Academy, San Diego, CA
Merrill Hendin, Portland Jewish Academy, Portland, OR
Jacqueline Herman, Bi-Cultural Day School, Stamford, CT
Cheryl Hersh, Austin Jewish Academy, Austin, TX
Yuri Hronsky, Ilan Ramon Day School, Agoura, CA
Jerry Isaak-Shapiro, Joseph & Florence Mandel Jewish Day School, Beachwood, OH
Stephanie Ives, Beit Rabban Day School, New York, NY
Kersten Jacobson Biehn, The Lerner Jewish Community Day School, Durham, NC
Howard Jacoby Ruben, Jewish Community HIgh School of the Bay, San Francisco, CA
Kathryn Jensen, Beth Hillel Day School, Valley Village, CA
Avery Joel, Fuchs Mizrachi School, Cleveland, OH
Elaine Kaplan, Rockwern Academy, Cincinnati, OH
Danny Karpf, Rodeph Sholom School, New York, NY
Andrea RC Kasper, Solomon Schechter Day School of Greater Hartford, W. Hartford, CT
Yossi Kastan, Brauser Maimonides Academy, Ft Lauderdale, FL
Andrea Katzman, Jewish Community Day School of Rhode Island, Providence, RI
Michael Kay, Solomon Schechter School of Westchester, Hartsdale, NY
Tammy Keces, Irvine Hebrew Day School, Santa Ana, CA
Debby Kinman-Ford, B'nai Israel Community Day School, Gainesville, FL
Darren Kleinberg, Kehillah Jewish High School, Palo Alto, CA
Larry Kligman, Abraham Joshua Heschel Day School, Northridge, CA
Jonathan Knapp, Yavneh Academy, Paramus, NJ
Ricki Komiss, The Shlenker School, Houston, TX
Binyamin Krauss, SAR Academy, Riverdale, NY
Jonathan Kroll, Katz Yeshiva High School of South Florida, Boca Raton, FL
Lena Kushnir, Solomon Schechter Day School of Metropolitan Chicago, Chicago, IL
Nancy Leaderman, Shalom School, Sacramento, CA
Ari Leubitz, Atlanta Jewish Academy, Atlanta, GA
Ray Levi, Director, Day School Leadership Training Institute, The Davidson School, JTS, New York, NY
Josh Levisohn, Melvin J. Berman Hebrew Academy, Rockville, MD
Sharon Levin, Jack M. Barrack Hebrew Academy, Bryn Mawr, PA
Abby Levine, Addlestone Hebrew Academy Charleston, SC
Helena Levine, Donna Klein Jewish Academy, Boca Raton, FL
Ezra Levy, Scheck Hillel Community School and Kesher, North Miami Beach, FL
Rachel Lewin, Temple Israel of Hollywood Day School, Los Angeles, CA
Menachem Linzer, Hillel Torah North Suburban Day School, Skokie, IL
Naomi Lippman, Hebrew Academy of the Five Towns and Rockaway High School, Cedarhurst, NY
Aaron Lippman, Milwaukee Jewish Day School, Milwaukee, WI
Sheva Locke, Valley Beth Shalom Harold M. Schulweis Day School, Encino, CA
Joshua Lookstein, Westchester Day School, Mamaroneck, NY
Rebecca Lurie, Solomon Schechter Day School of Greater Boston, Newton, MA
Cheryl Maayan, Saul Mirowitz Jewish Community School, St. Louis, MO
Mitchel Malkus, Charles E. Smith Jewish Day School, Rockville, MD
Benjamin Mann, Solomon Schechter School of Manhattan, New York, NY
Moshe Margolese, Ohr Chadash Academy, Baltimore, MD
Laleh Mourtil, Schechter School of Long Island, Williston Park, NY
Avi Baran Munro, Community Day School, Pittsburgh, PA
Sheldon Naparstek, Solomon Schechter School of Queens Flushing, NY
Nicole Nash, Hannah Senesh Community Day School, Brooklyn, NY
Ami Neuman, JEC High School, Elizabeth, NJ
Paul Oberman, Robert M. Beren Academy, Houston, TX
Joseph Oratz, Bruriah High School, Elizabeth, NJ
Benjy Owen, Margolin Hebrew Academy, Memphis, TN
Gil S. Perl, Kohelet Yeshiva High School, Philadelphia, PA
Amanda Pogany, Luria Academy of Brooklyn, Brooklyn, NY
Sharon Pollin, Jewish Community Day School of Greater New Orleans, Metairie, LA
Bruce Powell, de Toledo High School, West Hills, CA
Naomi Reem, Milton Gottesman Jewish Day School of the Nation's Capital, Washington, DC
Mallory Rome, The Rashi School, Dedham, MA
Tomer Ronen, Yeshivat He'Atid, Teaneck, NJ
Jennifer Rosenberg, Hebrew Day School of Ann Arbor, Ann Arbor, MI
Rivky Ross, Netivot, The Montessori Yeshiva, East Brunswick, NJ
Erica Rothblum, Rabbi Jacob Pressman Academy, Los Angeles, CA
Jeffrey Rothman, Yeshivah of Flatbush, Brooklyn, NY
Eliezer Rubin, JKHA/RKYHS, Livingston, NJ
Ilana Ruskay-Kidd, The Shefa School, New York, NY
Alan Rusonik, Jewish Academy of Orlando, Maitland, FL
Erika Saiers, Portland Jewish Academy, Portland, OR
Peg Sandel, Brandeis Marin, San Rafael, CA
Raquel Scharf-Anderson, DuBow Preschool & Martin J. Gottlieb Day School, Jacksonville, FL
Zipora Schorr, Beth Tfiloh Dahan Community School, Baltimore, MD
Moshe Schwartz, Krieger Schechter Day School, Pikesville, MD
Larry Schwed, Yeshivah of Flatbush, Elementary School, Brooklyn, NY
Ari Segal, Shalhevet High School, Los Angeles, CA
Amy Shafron, The Alfred & Adele Davis Academy, Atlanta, GA
Adam Shapiro, Golda Och Academy, West Orange, NJ
Mark Shpall, de Toledo High School, West Hills, CA
Susan Siege, B'nai Shalom Day School, Greensboro, NC
Robert Smolen, Academies @ Gerrard Berman Day School, Oakland, NJ
Gerald Sorokin, Talmud Torah, Edmonton, AB
Joshua Spodek, YULA Girls High School, Los Angeles, CA
Deborah R. Starr, Temple Beth Am Day School, Pinecrest, FL
Rami Strosberg, Westchester Torah Academy, New Rochelle, NY
Einav Symons, Kadimah Academy, Buffalo, NY
Susie Tanchel, JCDS, Boston's Jewish Community Day School, Watertown, MA
Lori Tenenbaum, Syracuse Hebrew Day School, DeWitt, NY
Moshe Vaknin, Gottesman RTW Academy, Randolph, NJ
Melanie Waynik, Ezra Academy, Woodbridge, CT
Tami Weiser, Wise School, Los Angeles, CA
Daniel R. Weiss, Solomon Schechter Day School of Las Vegas, Las Vegas, NV
Zvi Weiss, Yavneh Day School, Los Gatos, CA
Gary Weisserman, Milken Community Schools, Los Angeles, CA
Sarah White, The Alpert Family Aleph Bet Jewish Day School Annapolis, MD
Tali Zelkowicz, Columbus Jewish Day School, New Albany, OH
David Zimand, Gideon Hausner Jewish Day School, Palo Alto, CA
Saul Zucker, Ben Porat Yosef, Paramus, NJ

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