From the Rabbi’s Desk


Dear Friends:

Welcome to Abrams Hebrew Academy. I am proud to say that over the past several years we have substantially improved and revamped both our science and language arts programs, including the addition of new personnel. We have also added special education programs to address all levels of needs and abilities within our student population. It is noteworthy that, unlike other institutions that have been downsizing, Abrams continues to grow and expand its opportunities for excellence in education.

Today’s world is much more complicated for our children than it was when I was young. With so many issues- special needs, behavioral and emotional problems, diverse family situations, and a myriad of other dynamics to address- it became obvious to me that Abrams needed to institute a robust counseling program to ensure our children’s mental and emotional well-being.

My wife is a child psychiatrist, and we have often held discussions about the changed environment for young people. Therefore, I am happy to announce that Dr. Donna Porwancher, a child psychologist with stellar credentials and many years of experience in the Lawrenceville School District, has joined our staff to provide this much-needed counseling. Over the years I have grappled with issues revolving around children and their family situations and questioned what direction to take, since I am not a trained mental health professional. With the hiring of Dr. Porwancher I am now confident that Abrams will be able to address the mental health and conflict management issues that arise.

On the financial side, the PA EITC (Educational Improvement Tax Credit) program will provide almost $300,000 in needs-based financial aid this year. This aid allows needy children to attend Abrams and receive a Jewish education, and we have already met the July 1 deadline for next year. Of course we cannot simply rest on our laurels, and we intend to keep working to increase participation in the program every year for years to come.

One of our largest EITC supporters is Jim McCaffrey, owner of McCaffrey’s Food Market. He is thrilled that his contribution goes directly to helping deserving families who would not be able to afford a private school education to send their children to Abrams, and he has been extremely touched by the letters of thanks he’s received from recipients of his generosity.

Abrams is incredibly grateful to Jim for his continued support of the school, and I have officially designated McCaffrey’s Food Market the official supermarket of Abrams Hebrew Academy!

Shana Tova,

Rabbi Ira Budow