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Orthodox Educators Webinar
June 30, 2020 at 1:00 pm - 3:00 pm
Join us as we learn with and from three educators who have broken ground in their day schools to include their LGBTQ+ students.
We will explore what worked, what were the challenges they faced, and how others can adapt these strategies in their own day schools.
Amanda Pogany is in her eighth year as the Head of School at Luria Academy of Brooklyn. She has worked in the field of Jewish education as a teacher, consultant, mentor and coach. Prior to joining Luria, Amanda spent two years working with new teachers and administrators across the country, running professional development seminars, and working with them on best practices in building classroom communities, classroom management, and developing curriculum. She taught elementary and middle school Judaic studies for 7 years. A trained mentor through the Jewish New Teacher Prt, Amanda mentored teachers for the Davidson School at JTS, the Pardes Educators program, and the Solomon Schechter School of Manhattan. In her role as a consultant, Amanda has worked with The Covenant Foundation, Mechon Hadar, JDub Records, The Six Points Fellowship and a number of Jewish Federations. Amanda is a graduate of the Pardes Educators Program, has a Masters in Jewish Education from Hebrew University and a BA from Barnard College. She co-founded Altshul, an independent egalitarian minyan in Brooklyn, in 2005.
Rabbi Ari Segal serves as Head of School at Shalhevet High School in Los Angeles CA. Rabbi Segal speaks widely about time management, innovation and leadership development in Jewish schools. He holds an MBA from the Goizueta Business School at Emory University and an MSW in Communal Organization from Yeshiva University’s Wurzweiler School of Social Work.
Dr. Michelle Waldman Sarna is a School Psychologist at SAR Academy and Camp Psychologist at Camp Stone. Previously, she served as the Director of the Early Childhood Center at Educational Alliance and as the Associate Director of JLIC Professional Development and as a JLIC educator at NYU. She also founded the Downtown Family Jewish Experience. She received the “36 Under 36” honor by the Jewish Week for launching the Orthodox Leadership Project to empower Orthodox women in Jewish communal life. Michelle completed a post doc at the Tikvah Center – NYU Law School, focusing on Emerging Adulthood in Jewish and Muslim populations. She is blessed with 6 children and resides with her family in the Gramercy Park neighborhood of Manhattan.
This gathering will engage educators from Orthodox day schools who come together to discuss best practices in making their schools more LGBTQ inclusive in a culturally relevant and appropriate way.
Building on Eshel’s past success of the High School Pledge Project, and the subsequent Wellbeing Tour, we are continuing the work we began by providing an open forum for dialogue, learning, and discussion. After we launched the High School Pledge campaign, we worked closely with yeshiva day school alumnae to appeal to their alma maters to create open inclusion policies. Ten out of approximately 50 modern Orthodox day schools in the US have since adapted inclusion policies for the LGBTQ students. We consider this a great success of the campaign, but there is still more work to be done.
This gathering will bring together a number of dedicated educators who work in Orthodox day schools. These attendees have already given thought to inclusive policies and practices in their day schools and will share how they created LGBTQ inclusive spaces.
This symposium will also be open to others for whom LGBTQ inclusion is not an obvious nor easy step to take but who want to get ideas about how to move forward.