While they may not be on everyone’s radar, Jewish Schools in Panama provide an important combination of culture, values, and academics. With three main Jewish Schools in Panama City, there are several options to choose from for families who are hoping to find a school for their children that offers both rigorous academics and appreciation of the Jewish faith.
Read on to find out more about each of these three options and determine which is the best fit for you and your family.
The Magen David Academy
The Magen David Academy is the only Orthodox Jewish school in Panama and in all of Latin America for that matter. Founded in 2008, the school aims to provide families with an option that combines the high academic standards of international schools with the culture and Jewish values offered by Jewish schools.
Since its founding, The Magen David Academy as grown from a K-5 school to include both a middle and high school as well. To date, the school has graduated two classes of seniors and hopes to continue growing and developing in years to come.
Academics at Magen David Academy are approached with a focus on creativity and student exploration. Administrators and teachers want to prepare students not only to be successful in the academic world but in work and home life as well. As such, instruction focuses just as much on skills as it does on content. With particular emphasis on creativity, collaboration, communication, and critical thinking.
Families interested in enrolling students in The Magen David Academy should refer to their website and prepare to complete the six-step application process. This process includes an initial screening to check references either though the local or international community and/or one’s synagogue. The screening is followed by a tour and meeting with the Head of School. Interested students then submit an application and complete an admissions test. Admitted students will receive a welcome email and are then invited to enroll.
Not sure if The Magen David Academy is right for your children? Check out their website that provides plenty of information as well as a list of 10 reasons why The Magen David Academy is the right school for your family.
Isaac Rabin School
Another great option within the landscape of Jewish Schools in Panama is the Isaac Rabin School (Colegio Isaac Rabin in Spanish). The school was founded in 2000 in the Clayton neighborhood near the City of Knowledge.
The Isaac Rabin School aims to develop students to be responsible for their own personal growth, both in terms of academics and faith. The school shapes students to become critical thinkers within an environment that is multicultural with a focus on Judaism and its role in the modern world.
As of 2009, the Isaac Rabin School is part of the International Baccalaureate Organization (IBO) and thus offers students IB classes and the opportunity to earn an IB diploma. The IB curriculum is an international curriculum composed of rigorous courses that promote critical thinking, and comprehensive, inquiry-based learning. IB courses are offered at all levels, from the primary grades up through to high school.
Apart from the IB program, the Isaac Rabin School is known amongst the Jewish Schools in Panama City for their robust offerings of extracurricular activities. Students can join one of a number of sports teams, learn to play a musical instrument, learn an additional language, or make use of the school’s large, outdoor swimming pool.
Students interested in enrolling at the Isaac Rabin School will complete an interview with the school director, psychological and academic tests, and must provide a number of documents including a birth certificate and any prior academic records.
The Albert Einstein Institute
The third option for families when it comes to Jewish Schools in Panama is the Albert Einstein Institute. Located on Via Israel in the San Francisco neighborhood, the Albert Einstein Institute was founded in 1955, making it the oldest of the Jewish Schools in Panama City. This school aims to strike an important balance between religious and cultural values, and academic excellence.
The Albert Einstein Institute has an impressive track record for student success. About 90% of each graduating class goes to college, with about 53% of graduates studying at universities abroad.
From preschool through high school graduation, students complete a rigorous curriculum which includes instruction in English, Spanish, and Hebrew. In addition, students complete courses in everything from math and science to geography and computing.
There are also tons of opportunities for students to further their education after school clubs and activities. About 62% of students participate in after school activities which range from gymnastics to robotics to theater to debate.
Interested families should contact the school through their website to set up an informational session and interview.
So there you have it, a comprehensive list of the top Jewish schools in Panama City. What the options lack in quantity, they make up for in quality. Each of these schools serves hundreds of satisfied families who are looking to provide their children with an education that combines top-notch academics with Jewish faith and culture.