Robert M. Beren Academy

Robert M. Beren Academy is the only Jewish day school in Houston to serve students in preschool to 12th grade. It was originally founded in 1969 as The South Texas Hebrew Academy at the corner of South Braeswood and Chimney Rock.  In 1998, the school’s name was changed to Robert M. Beren Academy (RMBA) in recognition of a gift by the Israel Henry Beren Foundation.

Robert M. Beren Academy

11333 Cliffwood, Houston, TX 77035                   Rabbi Aharoni Carmel, Head of School

713-723-7170                                                  Mrs. Gavi Roisman, Director of Admissions

www.BerenAcademy.org

Religious Affiliation

RMBA is a private Modern Orthodox Jewish school, which serves Jewish families of all affiliations and is philosophically affiliated with the Yeshiva University. The curriculum incorporates Judaic studies with a comprehensive college preparatory program.

Location and Facilities

In 1999, RMBA built a state of the art, 54,000 square foot facility on a new 52-acre campus at the southern terminus of Cliffwood Drive.  The campus includes a 10,000 square foot library, multiple laboratories, a gymnasium, an art room, and athletic fields.

Admissions

To apply, all prospective families must complete an online application form and submit medical, teacher recommendation, and records release forms.  Students must also submit their standardized test scores (almost any test is acceptable such as ERBs, ISEE, SAT), transcripts, and any evaluation forms. Prospective students must visit the school for a meeting, testing, and observation. Parents must also meet with the school. 

Academic Tracks and Curriculum

In grades 1 to 5, students may choose to participate in the traditional educational track or the Montessori track. Middle school follows a traditional curriculum and mode of instruction.  RMBA also employs the Nature’s Classroom curriculum at Camp Young Judaea Texas and bi-annual trips to San Antonio.

Students in grades 9 through 12 will follow either the normal track or the AP track. RMBA’s dual curriculum of Judaic studies (Bible, Talmud, Jewish Philosophy, and Jewish Law) and college preparatory subjects (English, Math, Science and Social Studies) also includes specials such as Art, Physical Education, and Journalism.

A student must earn 33 credits and complete 25 hours of community service annually to graduate: English (4), Math (3), Science (3), Social Studies (4), Foreign Language (3), Physical Education (1), Electives (3), and Judaic Studies (12).  Two semesters equals one credit.

Special Needs

The school employs two counselors who provide regular assistance to students with diagnosed learning differences.

Foreign Languages

Students must complete up to College Level Hebrew in their Foreign Language requirement.  Spanish is offered as an elective in the high school.

Arts

Students attending RMBA are required to complete one course in the Fine Arts.   Art, AP Art, and Drama (as an after-school activity) are all offered for transcript credit.

Technology

RMBA has open Wi-Fi throughout the building, Smartboards in multiple classrooms, iPads available at a 4:1 student to tablet ratio, and a computer lab with 22 Windows based workstations.  Teachers interact with students and parents via Renweb, an online educational tool where teachers may post assignments, grades, and send emails to parents.

Extracurricular Activities

RMBA hosts a number of programs for students to interact with one another throughout the school year.  Students may join Drama, Model UN, SAGE, MAD, Stand With Us, or other student-facilitated interests.  In fall 2013, RMBA will participate in the ADL Step Up Anti-Bullying program and the nationwide Girls on the Run and Girls on Track programs.

During the summer, students ranging from 18 months to sixth grade attend Camp Moshava Houston, which is broken up into Machaneh Aleph (18 months to Kindergarten) and Machaneh Bet (grades 1 to 6), which takes place at RMBA.

Athletics

RMBA features four interscholastic sports programs at both the middle and high school levels: basketball, intramural flag football, tennis, and volleyball on both the middle and high school levels.

Parent Involvement

RMBA embraces an active parent body.  While the bulk of the parent-involved activities is geared towards family-centric holiday celebrations, the PTO is crucial in its leadership position in fundraising and volunteer coordination during multiple school events.

Beren Academy Fast Facts

Overview
School Type Religious, Coeducational
Religious Affiliation 

Uniforms

Modern Orthodox JewishDress Code Only
Date Founded 1969
Endowment N/A
Grades Served PreK-12
Enrollment 250
     Grade 12 19
     Grade 11 13
     Grade 10 20
     Grade 9 13
     Grade 8 14
     Grade 7 19
     Grade 6 20
     Grade 5 18
     Grade 4 21
     Grade 3 34
     Grade 2 18
     Grade 1 33
     Kindergarten 8
     Pre-Kindergarten 34
Student to Teacher Ratio 7:1
Faculty with Advanced Degrees (#/%) 17/71%
Minorities in Student Body 5%
Curriculum
Academic Tracks Offered On Track, AP, Montessori
Advanced Placement Courses Offered 12
Languages Offered Hebrew, Spanish
Calendar (Semester / Trimester / Other) Semester
Interscholastic Sports Programs 4
Graduating Seniors
National Merit Semi-Finalists 2012 (#/%) 0/0%
Average SAT Scores (Class of 2012) 1896
     Mathematics 638
     Critical Reading 639
     Writing 619
% Students Admitted to 4 Year University N/A
Admissions
Prime Entry Points PreK, 1, 6, 9
Pre-K $6,928-$8,697
Kindergarten $11,221
Grades 1-5 $15,120
Grade 6-8 $16,932
Grade 9-12 $19,638
Tuition Deposit $500
New Student Fee $100
Students on Financial Aid N/A

Excerpted from General Academic’s publication, “Houston Private & Select Public Schools: Survey, Analysis, and Research, 3rd Edition.”

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