Friday, January 13, 2012

Rothenberg - First Female in GOA’s History to Score 1,000th Point in Basketball

Golda Och Academy junior Gloria Rothenberg scored her 1000th point in basketball Thursday – the first female in the history of the school to reach this milestone.

During yesterday’s basketball game against Newark’s Central High School, the game was stopped at the beginning of the second quarter so she could be recognized for her achievement. She scored 24 out of 28 points for the team.

“The fact that Gloria is a junior and the first female to accomplish this at GOA is even more special,” said GOA Dean of Students Adam Shapiro, adding that Stephanie Aaron (Class of 2011) and Whitney Gruhin (Class of 2007) were relegated to the 2nd and 3rd spots respectively – Stephanie with 902 points and Whitney with 754 points. Both Stephanie and Whitney attended Thursday’s game.

“It was an exciting and momentous occasion for Gloria and women's athletics at Golda Och,” said Janet Herman, Athletic Director at Golda Och Academy. “She’s a great role model for the kids, on and off the court. It couldn’t have happened to a nicer kid.”

Coach Josh Breitman, who has been coaching Gloria since sixth grade, said, “She is very well-deserving of this accomplishment. She works all year long on her game, and this could only happen with that hard work. I am very proud of her and glad that I can be a part of this.”

In the first five games of the season, Gloria scored 165 points, averaging 33 points per game. On Tuesday she had a career high 51 points against Immaculate Conception. In addition to being the lead scorer, Gloria is also the consummate team player with 30 assists (6 per game) and 49 steals (9.8 per game).

She was named the team’s MVP after her freshman and sophomore years. Following the 2010-2011 season, Gloria was named to the first team Liberty Division of the SEC.

Yasher Koach, Gloria!

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Israel Club Denounces Beit Shemesh Attacks

The following article was writen by Daniel S., Sam M. and Carmelle B. on  behalf of the Upper School Israel Club.

I never meant any harm. All I ever wanted was to go to school. Yet, on the way to my all-girls school in Beit Shemesh, I have been spat at, and called terrible names by Haredi men. It is hard for me to understand why these men become so upset over the clothes I wear. I attend an orthodox school, and therefore abide by the dress code, stressing modestly. The verbal attacks have increased in number over the past few weeks, making me frightened of even walking to school. Sometimes, I am frustrated to see that fellow Jews treat other Jews this way. We all believe in the same God, the same morals, and the same values. With such malevolence towards one another, we will never be a unified Jewish nation. It is my dream that one day I, along with other Jews of all degrees of religiousness will be able to live with mutual respect, in this amazing country that we call home.

This story of Naama Margolise, an eight-year-old Orthodox girl who was attacked by right-wing extremists on her way to school in Beit Shemesh, struck our Israel Club as a disturbing example of disunity and extremism in our Jewish homeland. The students in our school have a strong personal connection to Israel and travel there in both freshman and senior years. We feel that it is incredibly important for Israel to be a stable and thriving country – “a light unto other nations.”

As a school that emphasizes values of Pluralism and Zionism, we feel it is extremely important to denounce the recent slew of attacks. While the Haredim are only a minority, (they make up only 10% of Israel’s population), recent history teaches us that the power of a violent minority should not be underestimated. The Arab Spring uprisings began as a small group of youth making their voice heard through the use of social networking. If the necessary steps are not taken to quell such acts of injustice towards women and other, less-observant Jews, the situation may escalate to become more violent and politically involved. This is why it is our job as Jewish leaders in our community to stand up for what Israel really is, a democratic homeland for Jews to live in coexistence, regardless of religiousness or gender.