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PEJE Program Testimonials

 

Atidenu no background

“What we learned through the Atidenu program, specifically the emphasis on data-gathering, helped us streamline our recruitment efforts and become more efficient and effective in our initiatives. With the accessibility and openness of the entire PEJE team, their wise guidance and leadership were instrumental in helping us to understand our market, set realistic goals and achieve significant success in increasing our market share in targeted market segments.”
Amanda Wener, Director of Admissions & Marketing, Hebrew Foundation School, Quebec Canada

“The way Apple made their iPhone headphones with white rubber casings and it was a huge hit—not rocket science, but subtly brilliant—that is the way Atidenu can impact school recruitment. This is not rocket science, but it is subtly brilliant to change how we see day school recruitment and retention. With a few directed and noticeable changes, we will change the landscape of day school enrollment, and even more importantly, the strength and vibrancy of the Jewish future.”
Miriam Stein, Admission Director for the Upper School, Charles E. Smith JDS

“The Atidenu project is well conceived and implemented. As a day school leader, it was great to bring our team to learn, meet experts, interface with other schools, and review best practice in this important area. I am a big fan of the former PEJE conferences, and almost without exception, you were able to create a day school community—respectful to all—with focus on the wisdom of both Jewish and independent school knowledge. Good use of time; excellent leadership, presenters, setting, and focus.”
Rabbi Dr. Mark Smiley, Head of School Associated Hebrew Schools of Toronto

“The [Atidenu] process itself has been thought-provoking, and we have been asked questions that we hadn’t been asking for a long time regarding who we are and what our message is. It has engendered really in-depth conversations within our team, and bringing that conversation to the conference, we feel that the speakers and programming have really addressed a lot of the major challenges and opportunities that our school faces right now. Seeing schools in the program with great reputations of various sizes is comforting for us and provided an opportunity for us to share, learn, and listen to each other. I feel that we have gotten an incredible amount already from the PEJE Atidenu program.”
Yoni Binus, Head of School Heilicher Minneapolis Jewish Day School

“On behalf of the Golda Och Academy team, I wanted to take some time out of the busy admissions season to let you know how invaluable the Atidenu program has been and continues to be for us. Through PEJE’s leadership and guidance, we have become more strategic in our approach to recruitment and retention… Atidenu has enabled us to look closely at what kind of school we are, who our families and alumni are, and where we can find those mission-appropriate families who appreciate and desire the value of a GOA education… At the second conference this past November, we were able to learn from other schools in the cohort while sharing successes and failures. It was a wonderful exchange of ideas and an inspirational yet organic way to learn from our colleagues in exceptional day schools across the country and Canada. We don’t deny that, at times, the work required has been time-consuming and challenging. Equally undeniable is the value we see already in our participation in this program. Thank you again for providing us and the other schools in the MetroWest community with this great opportunity.”
Gail Shapiro, Director of Admissions, Golda Och Academy

“It has been an absolute privilege to be part of the Atidenu program. I felt that this conference was a recruitment and retention boot camp; experts in the field shared with us a tremendous amount of information. They also had a great deal of empathy and support for those of us who were at different places in the continuum of best practice in terms of recruitment and retention. I am most grateful that we have a coach. That was one of the most appealing parts of Atidenu—that we would have someone with whom to have ongoing conversations, articulate a plan and a timeline, and help us define objectives as we move forward during the next 18 months. I, for one, as a new Head of School, would not have been able to move this agenda forward as I now feel I can with the help of PEJE and AVI CHAI.”
Andrea Kasper, Head of School Solomon Schechter Day School of Greater Hartford, CT

“The Atidenu conference has been an incredible learning opportunity for our whole team. The conference was packed with content from start to finish, and every session has inspired us with stories about how we can grow, followed by specific tactics to implement these new frameworks when we return to school. The conference and coaching are tailored specifically to our needs based on our answers to a PEJE Recruitment and Retention Self-Assessment Tool (RSAT) we completed prior to the conference. The tool inventoried our strengths and challenges around enrollment management, so we began the conference already focused on our specific areas of growth.”
Orna Siegel, Director of Enrollment and Tuition Assistance Charles E. Smith Jewish Day School Rockville, MD

 

“Our coach was incredible in helping our board focus on fundraising and move away from transactional fundraising activities to really developing long-lasting relationships with our constituents. To really focus the board on the importance of fundraising and the role we play as ambassadors in our community to help our schools achieve greater goals. “Everything has been top-notch, from the coaching staff to the seminars, to the materials provided. For our team, it was critical that we come together and really develop an integral plan and that we actually are held accountable and follow through; it has just elevated our fundraising dramatically. In our process, the materials, everything that we are doing, is just at such a different level having been a part of this program. We would not be in the place we are now, where we are just embarking upon an incredible journey that will be wonderful for our school and community. Thank you so much.”
Caroline Waldman, Board of Trustees Co-Chair The Gordon Schools of Beth David Congregation

“In my 21-plus years in education, the Leadership & Fundraising Academy was without a doubt the single most productive training that led to action that I have ever been a part of. I couldn’t have imagined being at the stage we are now after such a short time.”
Rabbi Avraham Zev Kosowsky, Headmaster Mesorah High School for Girls, Dallas

“For me personally, and our school, [the LFA] has been an invaluable tool in helping us increase the number of dollars that we’ve been able to bring into our annual campaign this year. Our coach was very helpful in us defining a development plan and putting the right people in place to be able to execute and accomplish that plan. And just meeting with her and her speaking to some of our stakeholders at the school was also very valuable and offered us the opportunity to really learn from an expert and somebody that had a lot more experience than we did. She energized us and was enthusiastic about helping myself and our school to accomplish our goals. She did a fantastic job in following up with us and making sure we were on the right track. So, as part oftheAcademy,the coaching aspect was probably the most beneficial.”
Jodi Bruce, Head of School Lehrman Community Day School, Miami

“Your commitment to schools like the El Paso Jewish Academy and Jewish education as a whole is truly inspiring. I look forward to working with you and our trainer over the next two years so that together we can strengthen our school and ensure that Jewish education thrives in El Paso for many years to come.”
Elliot Berg, esq., Board Chair El Paso Jewish Academy

 

“Our coach was incredible in helping our board focus on fundraising and move away from transactional fundraising activities to really developing long-lasting relationships with our constituents. To really focus the board on the importance of fundraising and the role we play as ambassadors in our community to help our schools achieve greater goals. “Everything has been top-notch, from the coaching staff to the seminars to the materials provided. For our team, it was critical that we come together and really develop an integral plan and that we actually are held accountable and follow through; it has just elevated our fundraising dramatically. In our process, the materials, everything that we are doing is just at such a different level having been a part of this program. We would not be in the place we are now, where we are just embarking upon an incredible journey that will be wonderful for our school and community. Thank you so much.”
Caroline Waldman, Board of Trustees Co-Chair The Gordon School of Beth David Congregation

“In my 21-plus years in education, the Leadership & Fundraising Academy was without a doubt the single most productive training that led to action that I have ever been a part of. I couldn’t have imagined being at the stage we are now after such a short time.”
Rabbi Avraham Zev Kosowsky, Headmaster Mesorah High School for Girls, Dallas

“For me personally, and our school, [the LFA] has been an invaluable tool in helping us increase the number of dollars that we’ve been able to bring into our annual campaign this year. “We had a lovely coach who helped us define a development plan and put the right people in place to be able to execute and accomplish that plan. And just meeting with her and having her speak to some of our stakeholders at the school was also very valuable and offered us the opportunity to really learn from an expert and somebody that had a lot more experience than we did. “She energized us and was enthusiastic about helping me and our school to accomplish our goals. She did a fantastic job in following up with us and making sure we were on the right track. So, as part of the Academy, the coaching aspect was probably the most beneficial.”
Jodi Bruce, Head of School Lehrman Community Day School, Miami

“Your work on leading our board to develop and commit to achievable yet high end goals was the main factor in our reaching our retreat goals. Trustees who were not in attendance sought me out yesterday asking about the materials you left for us, having heard from their colleagues how insightful they were. Our advancement director and committee chairs both enjoyed and learned a great deal and came away with new insights into how to organize the department better and why we are facing challenges in fundraising and how to deal with them.”
Chaim Heller, Head of School San Diego Jewish Academy on a visit by PEJE GFA staff to the school