Have no fear! The class of 2018 was here! Invading the halls of the Hebrew Academy of the Five Towns and Rockaway High School incoming freshmen and their parents had the opportunity to learn about the school on Oct. 27. They experienced firsthand HAFTR’s warm atmosphere and the reason why so many students love going to school every day.
First stop: the auditorium. There, students and their parents were addressed by Naomi Lippman, General Studies principal; Rabbi Gedaliah Oppen, Judaic Studies principal; junior Katie Glickman and Michael Weissman, and freshman Jason Mishkin. Glickman summed up HAFTR perfectly: “HAFTR High School molds friendships and it also molds the future leaders of Jewish society. However, HAFTR High School is unique in that it is not a cookie cutter. There is no such thing as the HAFTR student. That concept does not exist. HAFTR High School encourages students to be themselves.” The program ended with a cute student-produced video showing a glimpse into life at HAFTR.
Perspective students then split up into groups to go on a scavenger hunt in order to become familiar with some key places in the high school. Each group of eighth-graders was accompanied by a few upperclassmen and greeted at every location by a faculty member and high school student. At every stop, HAFTR merchandise and favors such as chocolate bars, pens, Kippot (head coverings), headbands, and rally towels were given out. Students visited the art room, college guidance, G.O. store, student lounge, and the science lab. Students were especially fascinated by the awesome experiment that science teacher Rita Sinensky conducted. While students were occupied with the scavenger hunt, parents heard about the many amazing aspects of the school. The open house came to a close in the gym where delicious food was available for all to enjoy, and many different high school clubs were on display for incoming students to explore.
Sophomores, juniors, and seniors were so happy to show eighth-graders around and made sure they felt comfortable. “I love HAFTR High School. I would do anything for HAFTR — even if that means waking up early Sunday morning,” said junior Alexandra Seelenfreund. Special thanks to Andi Koppelman and Leslie Gang for working so hard to make the open house a total success. HAFTR High School looks forward to welcoming the class of 2018 biezrat Hashem (with the help of God) in September of 2014.