Mrs Rapps is a native of Los Angeles, CA, and earned degrees from Princeton University (B.A. graduating cum laude), Columbia University (M.A.) and is currently working toward her Education Specialist Degree in Curriculum and Instruction from George Washington University. A Jewish day school graduate, Mrs. Rapps spent a year in Israel on Bnei Akiba's Hachshara program combining work on Kibbutz maale Gilboa with study at Michlelet Orot before pursuing her career in education. Most recently, she served as Assistant Principal at the Melvin J. Berman Hebrew Academy in Maryland, where she also taught Chumash. Mrs. Rapps chaired the upper school English department and taught English for several years. She spent more than seven years at BabagaNewz as the Teachers' Guide Editor and was a teacher and grade advisor at Yeshiva University High School for Girls. Throughout her career, Mrs. Rapps has demonstrated the professional agility necessary to lead across all areas of school life. Her unique experience is coupled with her belief that leaders of academic institutions are uniquely poised to create lifelong learners. She is passionate about providing students with a safe and nurturing environment to develop this foundation while increasing the intellectual, social and spiritual skills of our children.
Jordana Bernstein, Akiba Academy Class of '88, started working as a teacher at Akiba Academy in 1996, after the obtention of her undergraduate degree in psychology. Starting in 1998, she successively became Director of the Summer Camp program for preschoolers, initiated a "Mommy and Me" program, and became Assistant Director of Early Childhood and Recruitment/ Retention. In 2003, Jordana obtained her Master's degree in Early Childhood Education and she has been the Director of Early Childhood Education since 2006.
Meet Rabbi Avi Spodek, our new Middle School Principal. Before Akiba, he was head of Judaics and curriculum coordinator for Jewish Studies at Scheck Hillel Community High School. He served as chair of the Jewish History Department at Beth Tfiloh Dahan Community High School, and taught Jewish history at Kehillah Jewish High School. He attended the Pardes Institute of Jewish Studies, and pursued his orthodox rabbinic ordination in Jerusalem. He and his wife, Tikvah, are parents to new Akiba students Elana, Ariella and Noah.