A. A group of Conservative rabbis, joined by community members concerned about Jewish education for New York City families, began planning the school in 1994. The school opened its doors in 1996 to its first class of 14 kindergartners. Learn more about Schechter Manhattan’s history here.
Welcome to the Frequently Asked Questions that we receive from prospective parents.
If you have additional questions that you’d like to discuss, please contact our Head of School, Chris Aguero | 212-427-9500
Q. What grades does the school include?
A. Schechter Manhattan is a kindergarten through eight grade school.
Q. Where do your graduates go on to for high school?
A. We have sent thirteen classes of graduates to the best high schools in New York. Alumni families routinely tell us about the ways in which Schechter Manhattan laid the critical foundation for the success their children have had in high school and beyond.
Graduates attend a mix of prestigious Jewish high schools, specialized and other elite public high schools, and highly selective independent high schools. Please visit this overview of our alumni’s high school and university acceptances if you would like more information.
Q. Where are you located?
A. Our school is located on the southeast corner of 100th Street and Columbus Avenue at 805 Columbus Avenue.
Q. Are you accredited?
A. Schechter Manhattan is chartered by the New York State Board of Regents and accredited by the New York State Association of Independent Schools; it is a member of the Prizmah Jewish Day School Network.
Q. Who started the school, and when?
Q. How large are your classes? How many teachers work with each?
A. We have around 20 students per class.
In the elementary school (K-5), each class is taught by two bilingual teachers, who together share responsibility for the child’s development as a learner across all subject areas, Jewish and general. With two teachers in each elementary school classroom, we have a very low student-to-teacher ratio – an average of 10:1.
Middle School students (6-8) have specialist teachers with expertise in the core areas of math, science, humanities and Jewish Studies.
Subjects such as art, music and physical education are taught by specialists in all grade levels.
Q. What is your curriculum like?
A. Our goal is to help students grow into active, skilled, and powerful learners. In all subjects, from math to t’filah, lessons are planned to help students grow in mastery and confidence. Extensive individualized and group work means that teachers spend less time talking at the front of the classroom and more time listening to and observing students in their individual progress. In kindergarten, we ask students, “What do you want to know?” and build their interests into thematic units of study. Older students choose questions to research in individual projects that grow increasingly complex, culminating in Middle School exhibitions in each of the core areas of study.
Q. Do you have any after-school or extracurricular programs?
A. For our K-5 students, the after-school program is offered four afternoons/week. Students have a variety of options to choose from such as soccer, chess, yoga, magic, art and more! After-school programs are offered during both the fall and spring semesters and include a late option enabling parents/care givers to pick-up until 6 PM. Middle school students may join the school’s soccer team in the fall, basketball team in the winter, and/or volleyball team in the spring (fifth-grade students are invited to join the middle school students or participate in elementary after-school programs).
Q. What’s the community like? Are the parents friendly?
A. Our Schechter Manhattan community is amazing! The school seeks to admit families that identify with the school’s mission and philosophy. Just as menschlichkeit is a core principle of our approach to learning, it’s also one of the core traits of our parent body. In our annual Parents Survey, the warmth and friendliness of the Schechter Manhattan community is a theme we hear over and over.
Our very active Parents’ Association works to create a vibrant, engaging, and supportive environment for Schechter Manhattan families. Workshops on children’s learning and development and opportunities for Jewish learning alternate in the Parents’ Association calendar with community-building events like a picnic, community Shabbat dinners, film screenings and gatherings for each individual class. An annual Shabbaton retreat in June is a true highlight and is attended by more than half of the families in the school. Many Schechter Manhattan parents find that other parents in the school have become their closest friends.