Spotlight on Schools: Donna Klein Jewish Academy

Donna Klein Jewish Academy is an acclaimed K-12 day school in Boca Raton, FL, that has been embracing all streams of Judaism for the last 38 years. The school has a robust dual-curriculum recognized for being infused with the principles of the 7 Habits of Highly Effective People, strong STEAM programming at all grade levels, and a thriving fine, visual and performing arts program. For Hidden Sparks, what makes the school particularly exemplary, and ideal as a partner school, is that its commitment to excellence extends to all students in the school.

In 2014, when Hidden Sparks began exploring a partnership with schools in Florida, not only was Head of School, Helena Levine, eager to bring the program to DKJA, she played an active role in connecting Hidden Sparks to other schools in the area. Says Ms. Levine,  “I am an LCSW by training and my passion used to be in being a guidance counselor. During my process of becoming a Head of School- having the awareness of bright kids falling through the cracks because they don’t have the tools or their teachers don’t have the tools- was an issue I felt strongly about. [Bringing| your program [to the school] was a no brainer. But I didn’t know how impactful it would be.”

In 2015, along with the other four day schools and yeshivas in the area, DKJA sent a faculty team to begin their training with Hidden Sparks as part of a partnership supported by the Center for Initiatives in Jewish Education and the Jewish Federation of South Palm Beach County.

Since then the Hidden Sparks program in the school has taken off, with the support of a mentor that visits with the trained faculty monthly.

“The feedback that I’ve been getting is that the program is invaluable. In terms of those you trained you were preaching to the converted- but they still walked out of the training with so much new information- it was amazing! For me, I couldn’t be happier.”