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25 Iyar 5780

May 19, 2020

Dear ICJA Family:

Today was a great day! Not only did I have a chance to meet with our faculty during our now weekly “Teacher Town Hall Meetings,” but I was still basking in the glory of last night’s fantastic workshop led by graduating senior Josh Pogonitz. Josh was articulate, profound, and overflowing with insights as he shared his journey with mental illness and the strategies and support that led him to the wonderful place he is in today. As one of the participants wrote in the “chat” during his presentation, “so proud, he is such a leader”!


Earlier today, I sent a note to all of our students about recording the service points they have earned this year. Service points are how we measure a student’s service to the school via programming, committees, athletics, and much more. Service points are also crucial to students who hope to be part of the National Honor Society because one of their requirements is service. In case our students missed that email – here is the link. Please complete the online form ASAP.


With more than a hundred classes taking place every day, it is hard to focus on just a few. But today, Mrs. Zeffren’s honors freshman girls Navi class presented their final Esther projects. Their insights and creativity are exceptional. But don’t believe me – here are links to their work: project 1project 2, and project 3. At the same time, Rabbi Oren’s Talmud class studied the section of the Gemara that discusses our response to dever ba’ir [a plague in the city] and how those rulings impact our response to COVID-19. And, Mrs. Arons’ English classes are using a variety of media to describe characters and traits from the literature they have studied this year.


Tomorrow at 8 pm, we will present live from Israel, the amazing mentalist Eran! The online show is for ICJA alumni, and we hope that you can help us spread the word! His previous performance at Grandparents Day was spectacular, and he has a new show for tomorrow night. CLICK HERE for the link to his performance. 


Wednesday’s schedule is:

Period 2: 9:30 – 10:10 a.m.

Period 3: 10:15 – 10:55 a.m.

Period 4: 11:00 – 11:40 a.m.


Period 10: 1:00 -1:40 p.m.

Period 11: 1:45 – 2:25 p.m. 

Period 12: 2:30 – 3:10 p.m.


AP English Language and Composition exam is at 1:00 p.m. 


Finally, Thursday night and Friday will be Yom Yerushalayim. Despite the “stay at home” order, this year there will be many ways to celebrate G-d’s gift of the reunification of Jerusalem – Thursday night at 7:20 pm there is a program and tefillah with Religious Zionists of Chicago; Friday morning a community Hallel with our YU Torah MiTzion Kollel youtube/kollel613, and then an entire afternoon of programming from 11 am – 5 pm with World Mizrachi Make some time to celebrate the miracle and share in the joy of Yerushalayim!


Stay safe, stay inspired, and stay in touch!


B’virkat HaTorah,



Rabbi Leonard A. Matanky, Ph.D.

Dean, Ida Crown Jewish Academy 

8233 Central Park • Skokie, IL 60076

773/973-1450 • FAX 773/973-6131




May 20 – 8 p.m. ALUMNI EVENT with Mentalist Eran! CLICK HERE

May 22 – Yom Yerushalayim (1st period)

June 8-12 ICJA Final Assessments Week 

Aug 16 – 1 p.m. ICJA Graduation



• Volunteer to tutor an elementary school student – ATT Tutor-A-Child Initiative  click here

• The ICJA Tefillah Challenge! See the attached flyer

• Order your 2020 Keter Yearbook –

• Buy your ICJA Face Mask and support community chesed organizations – click here

• Receive extra academic support via REACH email:

• June -August YU SUMMER SCHOOL for High School Students –

• June-August – Lookstein Virtual SUMMER SCHOOL –

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