Would you like your high school learning to be an obligation, or an opportunity?
“What if you were taught that your questions and interests in Judaism, math, science, art, and literature were of utmost importance? What if the teachers’ top priority was how hard you worked to understand, and how much you grew as a person from the lessons you learned? In Midreshet Shalhevet, this is certainly the philosophy, and the effect it has on the classroom environment is immense.” shared senior Michal Beer of West Hempstead.
On Sunday, November 6, Midreshet Shalhevet High School, sister school to Rambam Mesivta, a National Blue Ribbon School, held their annual Open House for prospective students and parents. Girls from 15 different schools around Long Island, Queens, West Hempstead, and Brooklyn, came to see for themselves what Midreshet Shalhevet is all about, and how amazing it is.
After enjoying some refreshments, everyone gathered in the standing room only auditorium to hear from Midreshet Shalhevet students and faculty. Ninth grader, Basya Borenstein of Queens began the program by expressing her love of Midreshet Shalhevet after only a few months. Basya spoke about how easy Midreshet Shalhevet made the transition to high school, and how the start of high school was better than she could have ever imagined. Assistant Principal, Mrs. Shaindy Lisker, then spoke about what makes a Midreshet Shalhevet girl stand out; exemplifying midot, chesed, and Ahavat Yisroel.
Sophomore Avygayl Zucker of Far Rockaway took the floor and raved about all of the incredible extra-curricular activities that Midreshet Shalhevet offers; from sports, to mock trial, school play, art, and more. An important point Avygayl emphasized was that Midreshet Shalhevet has so many opportunities, and how each student can get involved in anything she wants. Avygayl spoke about the numerous extra-curricular activities she is involved in, and how the average student is involved in at least 3 or 4.
Avygayl then introduced Tamar Lichter, a Midreshet Shalhevet graduate of 2013. Tamar, currently a senior in Macaulay Honors at Queens College, recently received the prestigious Goldwater Scholarship, a national scholarship for undergraduates who plan to pursue a career in research in (science, technology, engineering, or math) S.T.E.M. She noted how as she progressed in her studies, she could clearly see how Midreshet Shalhevet prepared her well for a secular college education. Since graduating from Midreshet Shalhevet, Tamar has done original research in math and computer science, including, a project in gesture authentication for smartphones at Rutgers University. She thanked Midreshet Shalhevet for preparing her for these endeavors, “but more importantly” she concluded, “Midreshet Shalhevet prepared me for being a Torah Jew in the professional world”.
Rosh Yeshiva, Rabbi Zev Meir Friedman then shared Midreshet Shalhevet’s mission; a small school by design that does not fit any specific mold, a school incredibly adept at customizing for the needs of each and every student. A school that is warm, nurturing, and inspires individual growth, encouraging girls to pursue any profession they choose while adhering to a Torah framework.
The guiding principal of Midreshet Shalhevet is that our girls should not be intimidated by the secular world, but should be prepared for it. Rabbi Friedman stressed that at Midreshet Shalhevet we focus on the core values of tzniut - both in how a person behaves, as well as in dress, Kavod Habriyot, Ahavat Yisrael, Hakarat HaTov, Yosher – learning to admit mistakes and apologize, and very importantly Ahavat Eretz Yisrael.
Midreshet Shalhevet is a school that prides itself on our Israel activism - not just in theory, but also in practice. The girls actively participate in rallies multiple times each year, and many are involved in our Committee for Israel Activism, which bringing in speakers, plans and executes programs, and educates the entire student body on what has and is happening currently in Israel and around the world so that they will be prepared to be a part of the dialogue and have answers to tough questions when prompted.
“In Midreshet Shalhevet, we are constantly being challenged, whether it be in Judaic or secular studies. There are so many electives and AP courses to choose from,” commented senior Michal Beer. “Through Midreshet Shalhevet’s nurturing learning environment, and our fantastic teachers, I am able to appreciate learning in ways that I hadn’t before” she continued. “Midreshet Shalhevet’s academics have shaped me into who I am, and has prepared me for my future. The degree of personal care and attention to every student makes me so sad to leave Midreshet Shalhevet at the end of this year. Because of the individualized environment, I have grown so close with many of my teachers. They play a crucial role in the person I have become today. Thanks to Midreshet Shalhevet’s approach to education, learning has become a fundamental and enjoyable part of my life.”
Michal also discussed Midreshet Shalhevet students’ impressive SAT and ACT scores and each student is guided in selecting the right Israel program and college for them. She also mentioned how Principal, Mrs. Eisenman’s office is always open and how she finds the time to address the needs of each student.
Mrs. Eisenman then concluded the speeches by expressing how remarkable all of the girls in Midreshet Shalhevet are; the top-notch colleges and seminaries that they are accepted to, and their true love for all of Am Yisroel. Teachers were highlighted as the backbone of the school, challenging each student and providing interesting and stimulating discussions in every class. Mrs. Eisenman also read statements from alumnae in Israel who expressed their thanks to Midreshet Shalhevet for preparing them fully for life after high school, as well as statements from Israel programs and college deans highlighting our students as open minded, who love an intellectual challenge. She again highlighted Midreshet Shalhevet’s educational approach - critical inquiry. Questions in class are not only welcomed, they are encouraged. Teachers guide students to evaluate and analyze the material, to search for solutions and achieve a lasting understanding, rather than mere memorization. The attention to each individual that permeates the entire school and of course the classrooms is really what sets Midreshet Shalhevet apart. No one gets overlooked; everyone matters. “We are a smaller school by design, with big school opportunities both academic and extracurricular,” she concluded.
Following the speeches, the parents and students took part in mini class lessons led by Zionism coordinator, Rabbi Yotav Eliach, chumash teacher, Mrs. Andrea Schulman, math teacher, Mr. Mike Kelly, TSBP teacher, Rabbi Matt Schneeweiss, and science teacher Mr. Menachem Borenstein .
The classes that they participated in were just a taste of the excitement and energy found throughout Midreshet Shalhevet on a daily basis. All of the parents and students were then invited to the ballroom where they enjoyed a gorgeous buffet with Midreshet Shalhevet teachers, parents, and students present to answer questions and convey more information about what an incredible school Shalhevet is.If you missed out on this wonderful experience, you are invited to join us at the school any day for a personal tour of our wonderful classes.
Please contact Shani Seewald, Director of Communications, at 516-224-0240 x204 or for more details.