Academy & Confirmation (Grades 7-10)

The Maurice H. Kornberg Academy Program 


The Academy program at Congregation Beth Or is the next step in your child’s religious school education. This program allows students to explore topics in Jewish spirituality, history, culture and ethics at a deeper level. In addition to core studies for each grade, students choose elective classes that change several times throughout the year, offering students the chance to explore topics that are personally relevant to them. 

The Academy program provides an opportunity for students to learn and interact in an environment where they are enriched by high quality teachers, including members our clergy, and challenged to ask difficult questions. Above all, we seek to create a sense of community for our students, so that they begin to feel connected to each other and to their own Jewish identity, paving the way for them to become engaged Jewish adults. 

Academy is About Choices


Academy Classes: This traditional academy option open to 7th, 8th, and 9th grade students continues the learning model represented in our Sunday program. Classes are designed to appeal to the intellectual needs of the learners and allow students to choose paths of their interest and customize the learning experience. Our 7th grade students explore the various cycles of Jewish life and celebration as found in a living a full Jewish life.Our 8th and 9th grades are combined into one cluster which is taught by Rabbi Gerber, Cantor Green and other professional staff.

Confirmation: Confirmation is for our 10th grade students and meets 3 times a month on Sundays from 5:00 - 7:00 pm. Taught by Rabbi Marx and the Director of Religious School, Aaron Nielsenshultz. The class focuses on big events in Jewish history and Jewish theology. It includes several optional experiential learning trips: a social justice lobbying program in Washington, DC, experiencing immigration from the Jewish lens in New York City and a once in a lifetime trip to Israel.

Rosh Chodesh & Rosh Brodesh: This unique option is open to our 8th and 9th grade students. Most sessions are split by gender (Rosh Chodesh – girls, Rosh Brodesh – boys) with a focus on Jewish values and sacred texts through experiences and the relationships they build. Some programming will be joint with both groups combined. The option includes two mandatory retreats as well as a group social action program. Classes will be taught by Rabbi Gerber (Rosh Brodesh) and our Director of Youth and Camp Engagement, Jillian Glick (Rosh Chodesh).

Team Tzedek: In the Hebrew language “tzedek” means justice. The purpose of this class is to raise awareness of social issues, plan and execute fundraisers, and participate in community service. Students take leadership roles within the class, learning how to lead and educate for change. Students may also be eligible to collect community service hours for secular requirements in their local school. This option is open for students in 8th through 12th grade.

Teen Leadership: This option open to students in 8th through 12th grade will focus on the skills and best practices of student teachers. Participants will student teach, plan lessons and participate in workshops. Teen Leadership students will pair the program with two “retreat style” (overnights) programs in the fall and spring, 10th graders will pair this program with Confirmation, and 11th and 12th graders will pair the program with bi-weekly Beit Midrash learning sessions with the Director of Religious School, Aaron Nielsenshultz, on a weekday evening. This option is open for students in 8th through 12th grade.

Students may sign up for any/all of the above programs. The cost of program(s) is $725, regardless of how many you participate in. For more info, contact Sharon Carlin in The Education office at 215-646-7417 or e-mail [email protected]