Tremendous excitement was in the air on Thursday, February 18, as the popular radio program JM in the AM was broadcast live from Ma’ayanot. Host Nachum Segal, father of Ma’ayanot students Chava ‘16 and Yonina ‘17, transformed the school’s beit midrash into a radio studio. There, he interviewed founding parents, current parents, school administrators, teachers and students on a wide variety of topics, from 20th anniversary celebrations to extracurricular opportunities to unique student initiatives.
The show opened with greetings from Mrs. Rivka Kahan, Principal, and Mrs. Tamar Appel, Assistant Principal, who also took a few moments to speak about about Ma’ayanot’s unique vision for Jewish education for young women.
A highlight of the show was when Rabbi Zev Prince, Talmud teacher and Director of Religious Programming at Ma’ayanot, called in from New Orleans, where he was chaperoning 20 Ma’ayanot students on the school’s annual Ma’ayanot/NCSY service mission. Indeed, Rabbi Prince’s interview took place just as the students were preparing to board a bus for a day of building at a Habitat for Humanity work site.
A number of the interviews referenced the fact that Ma’ayanot is currently celebrating its 20th anniversary year, and it was an emotional moment as Mrs. Bonnie Eizikovitz, one of Ma’ayanot’s founding parents, described the tremendous tension felt by the school founders as they endeavored to recruit students for Ma’ayanot’s inaugural class in 1996. Thankfully, an interview late in the show with the school’s admission director, Mrs. Nina Bieler, confirmed that recruitment is now on sound footing due to Ma’ayanot’s excellent reputation both in and beyond the immediate community.
Another highlight of the show was when Mrs. Orly Nadler and Mrs. Gila Stein, Co-Directors of S.T.E.A.M. Education and Innovation at Ma’ayanot, described their plans to launch a new STEAM curriculum for next year, the core of which will be a two-year course in engineering, computer science, robotics and big data analysis that will be required for all students in ninth and tenth grades.
Toward the end of the program, after over two hours of interviews, Mr. Segal noted that “a theme of student initiative and empowerment has certainly emerged this morning.” Indeed, in almost every interview segment, interviewees, from students to parents to teachers, stressed the degree to which Ma’ayanot students are both encouraged and trained to take responsibility for their academic and extracurricular lives at Ma’ayanot. To hear all the interviews, click here.