Introducing Our New Head of Middle School and MS Math Teachers
Gary Weisserman, Head of School
It has been a busy start to the final stretch of this school year, including finalizing exciting new staffing updates for 2023-24. It gives me great pleasure to introduce our new Head of Middle School, Emily Crane, and two new math teachers, Rachel Parks and Carly Rafferty, who will join our dynamic Middle School team!
Introducing Emily Crane, Head of Middle School
Most recently, Ms. Crane served as Principal Education Specialist for the Child Program at Compass Health Center in Northbrook, and prior to that served as  the Director of Faculty and Student Services at Chicago Jewish Day School. She demonstrates incredible knowledge, experience, and dedication to excellence in Jewish education. Her vision will help guide our middle school into its next phase of growth, and we are excited to have her join our leadership team!
Ms. Crane has a lifelong commitment to Jewish education and experiences, both in school and during summers, and is the current Chair of the Board of Governors for URJ Olin-Sang-Ruby Union Institute (OSRUI) in Oconomowoc, WI. 
She holds a Bachelor's Degree (UIUC) in English Literature and Sociology, as well as a Master's Degree (DePaul) in Curriculum Development and Teaching, with specific Endorsements in middle school education. For the past 25 years, she has largely worked in middle school education, both in public and private school settings. 
You will have the chance to get to know Ms. Crane before she begins her role this summer. We will share those opportunities in mid-May.
“I am beyond thrilled to join the Bernard Zell community this fall as Head of Middle School. Your welcoming nature, the family feeling throughout and the obvious intention to learn with diligence and heart are already self-evident. As I begin in this role, I look forward to meeting and getting to know everyone, and building our future together.”
— Emily Crane

Thank you Dani Steele, Interim Head of Middle School 
Please join me in thanking Dani Steele for the phenomenal job she has done and continues to do  this year, serving with incredible distinction as our Interim Head of Middle School.  It's impossible to overstate all that she's done, and the grace, intelligence, and professionalism with which she's done it.  We are so grateful for all she gives to the school, and are lucky to have her back in the classroom—her true passion. 

Introducing our New Middle School Math Teachers
Rachel Parks
Rachel Parks graduated from the University of Minnesota with a Bachelor's Degree in Mathematics, and completed her Masters of Arts in Teaching in March at National Louis University. Over this past school year, Ms. Parks taught Algebra I and II at Von Steuben High School in Chicago. Ms. Parks is getting married over the summer and will be known as Ms. Kammeyer when she starts in the fall. She is excited to be back at BZ, where she was a guest teacher during the 2021-22 school year! 
Carly Rafferty 
Carly Rafferty graduated from Boston College with a Bachelor's in Mathematics. She spent the last school year at Newton Country Day, an independent school for grades 5-12, in Newton, MA as a prestigious math fellow, as well as serving as hockey and soccer coach. She's looking forward to moving to Chicago this summer, and beginning her new role at BZ in August. 

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