Leadership team grows at newly merged Akiba/Yavneh
Photo: Courtesy of Akiba/Yavneh Academies
Rabbi Yaakov Green is the new head of school at the newly merged Akiba/Yavneh Academies.

This fall, three senior educators will join Akiba/Yavneh Academies, a Modern Orthodox day school for infants through high schoolers.
Rabbi Yaakov Green will serve as the head of school. Most recently, Green led the HF Epstein Hebrew Academy of St. Louis, Missouri, where he was instrumental in re-accrediting the school; balancing the budget; hiring and supervising principals, teachers and staff; fundraising; and building relationships within the larger community.
As the new general studies principal for Yavneh, Donna Hutcheson will draw on her 30 years of experience in the public-school sector, most recently as assistant principal at North Garland Math Science and Technology Magnet.
“I am most passionate about kids. They are the world-changers, the new innovators and the future,” said Hutcheson. “I believe that the biggest part of my job is to create and nurture the most optimal environment for students to challenge themselves and succeed at their highest levels.”
Hutcheson will partner with Yavneh’s longtime principal, Rabbi Maury Grebenau, to support Rabbi Green.
Amanda Stubbs will join the educational leadership team to serve as director of the Ma’alot Learning Platform, a new initiative that will provide students with diverse learning needs the opportunity to realize their full potential. Stubbs brings with her more than 10 years of experience working with children from diverse learning backgrounds in the Denison Independent School District. Her responsibilities there included developing curriculum, mentoring new teachers, serving as a lead teacher, developing and sustaining after-school programs, and staff training and development.
These new hires will join an experienced and successful leadership team already in place.
This year, K-8 Principals Rabbi Chanania Engelsman and Danielle Gershon implemented computer-adaptive standardized tests, the first eighth-grade class trip to Israel, a new reading program, 21st-century classroom seating and new technology for teachers and students. Rabbi Engelsman came to Akiba from SAR Academy in Riverdale, New York; Gershon worked at the Solomon Schechter Day School of Metropolitan Chicago.
Early Childhood Director Jordana Bernstein has grown the Akiba early childhood program to include popular Parent & Me classes, parenting seminars and a robust summer camp. Additionally, the Jewish Theological Seminary chose Akiba’s Early Childhood Program as one of five schools in the United States — and the only school in Texas — to be part of the Jewish Early Childhood Education Research Collaborative.
“We have a strong and talented team in place to elevate our school next year and beyond,” said Bernstein, an alumna of Akiba who has served as the early childhood director for 13 years. “We can’t wait to get started.”

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