It gives us great pleasure to announce the appointment of our new Director of SINAI at SAR Academy, Ms. Aura Lurie. We will open our doors at SAR Academy in the fall of 2018, giving Ms. Lurie a full year to plan, prepare, and build a team.
Ms. Lurie has worked at SAR Academy for over a decade as a head teacher and as an inclusion teacher in the elementary school, teaching children with a range of learning disabilities within SAR’s inclusion classrooms. She has also served as a mentor to other teachers through the Jewish New Teacher Project/New Teacher Center for the past five years, and has participated in the Educational Leadership Advancement Initiative, through the Lookstein Center for Jewish Education. She holds a Masters in Elementary and Special Education from the Bank Street Graduate School of Education, and has been working with children who have learning, behavioral, or emotional challenges for the past 18 years.
Ms. Lurie’s experience and reputation as an outstanding special educator and leader make her eminently qualified for this position, and the fact that she comes to us from within SAR is a wonderful added bonus. The inclusive environments we are able to create for our students work so well precisely because of the cooperative relationship we share with each of our partner schools. We are so grateful to SAR Principal Rabbi Binyamin Krauss and the entire SAR board and faculty for welcoming SINAI with open arms. Because Ms. Lurie comes to us from within SAR, we know we will have a tremendous edge in the successful operation of our inclusion model at SAR from Day One.
SINAI at SAR initially will serve children ages 6-8 who have a wide range of complex learning challenges and/or developmental disabilities, with the goal of expanding slowly to serve more children each year. It will become our seventh school, and SINAI’s first within New York City. Our partnership with SAR will enable us to serve many more families from New York City and Westchester who have children with special needs that cannot be met in a regular education classroom, or even the inclusion classrooms that SAR currently provides to support children with learning needs.
We thank Rabbi Krauss for encouraging Ms. Lurie to apply for this position, and for recommending her to us with such heartfelt endorsement. He has characterized her as a “rising star,” and we are thrilled to have her join our SINAI family.