ABOUT US
MERKAZ BNOS HIGH SCHOOL-BACKGROUND

Merkaz Bnos High School was founded in September of 1990 in order to fill a specific void in the Jewish community of the metropolitan New York area. The school’s founder and director, Rabbi Chaim A. Waldman, had been actively involved for a number of years in the area of Jewish education and outreach. Rabbi Waldman’s tireless efforts and impressive achievements in a wide range of communal endeavors had garnered him a widespread reputation as a pioneer in the creation of educational and social programs. His experience led him to the realization that there was a need for a new educational institution expressly designed to provide serious Jewish teenage girls of varying cultural backgrounds with a thorough grounding in both classical Judaic knowledge and secular studies. After conferring with prestigious educators and rabbinic leaders in the community, Rabbi Waldman recruited a core group of experienced instructional personnel and established Merkaz Bnos High School.

Rabbi Waldman felt that the school should operate with the intention of reaching several ultimate goals for each student:
1) Each girl should graduate with a firm grasp of Judaism’s sacred tenets and an abiding respect for its unique role in one’s everyday lifestyle. The observance of the Torah and its commandments is to be cherished and practiced with love.
2) Each girl should receive a thorough and comprehensive General Studies education so as to be fully prepared to enter the college of her choice with the requisite intellectual capabilities and self-confidence.
3) Each girl should be imbued with feelings of consideration and understanding regarding other individuals who are of different backgrounds. Girls should develop a tolerance of their fellow Jews and citizen and appreciate the special qualities found in each and every individual. These goals are accomplished in a highly professional, challenging and caring atmosphere.

Merkaz has created its own special niche among modern-day Judaic centers of learning. It has achieved this feat by instilling the above goals in both its staff members and student body from the moment they enter the school’s surroundings and by consistently reiterating those ideals throughout each semester. The school’s principals are chosen for their reputations as highly qualified individuals in the educational field, with years of fruitful experience. Each instructor and faculty member is selected on the basis of his/her previous work record, which must be exemplary, and his/her proven ability to develop a close, productive relationship with each student within their domain. The school has spared neither energy nor expense in its quest to implement academic programs of the highest caliber, to install learning-related equipment that represents the latest in technological expertise, and to regularly upgrade the school’s instructive methodology. The school has further gone to great lengths to provide its students with a fully rounded program of education, designed to allow each student to develop to her fullest potential. This program features classes across a whole spectrum of Judaic studies, ranging from classic Torah texts to prayer to Jewish ethics, as well as a high level, comprehensive General Studies curriculum. Every pupil is catered to at Merkaz. A unique feature of our Judaic Studies program is that rather than being divided by grade, our students are divided based on their skill level and their previous knowledge of Judaica. These groups, Kevutzot, allow our girls to progress at their own pace and also fosters school unity as students from different grades may share the same Judaic Studies classes. We also offer a special program of Mechanchot (mentors), teachers who are responsible for each Kevutza. These teachers foster a personal relationship with the girls and their parents. They call each student's home and also discuss with each Kevutza their specific needs and concerns. The Mechanchot's often invite the girls to come to their homes for Shabbat; bake challah with the classes and also hold special group parties and discussions as outlined in their syllabi and thereby develop lifelong relationships.