Golda Och Academy Celebrates the Completion of a Sefer Torah


In a special ceremony on Tuesday, October 21, just a few days after Simchat Torah, Golda Och Academy students, faculty, and friends came together to welcome and celebrate a completed Sefer Torah at the Wilf Lower School Campus. The Torah was dedicated in memory of Golda Och, z’’l, a beloved founder of the school.

The dedication and presentation of the beautiful Torah, which involved singing, dancing, and reciting a special shehecheyanu, culminated the Sefer Torah Community Project. The project launched in October 2012 and, over the course of two years, members of the GOA community had the opportunity to scribe with Upper School teacher and soferet, Linda Coppleson and witness the creation of a sefer Torah.

“The new sefer Torah is a beautiful tribute to a wonderful teacher, founder and friend of our school. Golda Och was a true Jewish educator in every sense of the word and it is fitting that we now have this exquisite Torah, scribed by her friend, former colleague, and current Upper School teacher, Linda Coppleson, to have in our Wilf Lower School Horace Bier Beit Knesset as a poignant nod to her incredible legacy,” said Adam Shapiro, Associate Head of School and Upper School Principal.

Sign Up for E-News

Golda Och’s husband, Dr. Michael Och, and their daughter, Sue Och, were in attendance at the dedication. Dr. Och assisted in scribing the first word of the Torah and had the opportunity to scribe the last word of the Torah, Yisrael, as GOA fifth graders eagerly watched on.

“There is special significance to our community in this Sefer Torah dedicated in Golda Och’s memory. It will be used for years to come by our students in the school which bears her name, and that is particularly meaningful,” said Rabbi Joyce Raynor, Head of School.

The GOA community relished in the unique opportunity to participate in fulfilling a commandment – to “write a new Torah.” The Sefer Torah is now housed in the new Beit Knesset within the recently renovated Wilf Lower School Campus.

“One of the things that makes this Torah so special is now our building is complete. A new building with a Beit Knesset is like a dream. We will treasure it and use it with love,” said Carrie Siegel, Lower School Principal. 

Located in West Orange, NJ, Golda Och Academy is an accredited private independent school offering a college preparatory private school experience to students from Pre-K through 12th grade, while nurturing Jewish identity and knowledge. In the tradition of Solomon Schechter schools, the school grounds a rigorous academic curriculum in the culture and tenets of Conservative Judaism, while welcoming students and families from a range of synagogue affiliations and Jewish expression. The school is located on two campuses with a Lower School and an Upper School, which are located about two miles apart in West Orange. The schools serve approximately 550 students from more than 70 communities across New Jersey including Livingston, Millburn/Short Hills and Westfield.

Golda Och Academy

  • Wilf Lower School Campus— Pre-K - 5, 122 Gregory Avenue,West Orange, NJ 07052, Phone: 973-602-3700
  • Eric F. Ross Upper School Campus— 6 - 12, 1418 Pleasant Valley Way, West Orange, NJ 07052, 973-602-3600


The opinions expressed herein are the writer's alone, and do not reflect the opinions of or anyone who works for is not responsible for the accuracy of any of the information supplied by the writer.

TAP Into Another Town's News:

You May Also Be Interested In

Sign Up for E-News


Save $2.50 on Next Visit to Livingston Car Wash

July 17, 2018

LIVINGSTON, NJ — Drivers can save $2.50 the next time they get their vehicle cleaned at Livingston Car Wash.

Come to Livingston Car Wash at 111 E. Mt. Pleasant Avenue for a car wash and $2.50 will be discounted from the regular price.

$100 OFF per Week for Summer Camp Now!

Guerrero Marital Arts is now offering an 8-week summer camp for summer 2018!

Pick which weeks you want!

Camp Weeks are:

July 16, July 23, July 30, August 6, August 13, August 20, August 27

Includes the following:

Fun (through Sports, Play and Games)
Field Trips (may cost extra)
Life Lessons
Reading Time
Martial Arts
A great place to ...

Upcoming Events


Sat, July 21, 12:30 PM

CycleBar Livingston, Livingston

Bike for the Bean

Giving Back Health & Wellness


Sat, July 21, 7:30 PM

Par 440 Restaurant & Lounge, SHORT HILLS

Solid Gold with Bobby Valli at Par 440

Arts & Entertainment Food & Drink

Newark Lures Amazon With $1 Billion Payroll Tax Incentive

July 14, 2018

NEWARK, NJ - Amazon will get a payroll tax break at a cost of $1 billion to the city should the company open its second headquarters in Newark, according to one of two ordinances approved by the Newark City Council council to sweeten the deal for the corporate giant and stand out among other locations vying for Amazon’s so-called HQ2.

“The City Council has brought Newark a ...

Public Invited to Essex County Opioid Use Prevention Task Force Meeting

July 15, 2018

CALDWELL, NJ — All Essex County residents, mayors and councils, law enforcement members, school officials, clergy members, civic organizations and more are invited to join in the next Essex County Opioid Use Prevention Task Force meeting on Tuesday at 5:30 p.m. to discuss how the Essex County communities can join work together to eradicate this epidemic.

The meeting will be held at the ...

Extra Time

It was close to 70 minutes into the match and I had to go to the bathroom.  Badly.

As fans watching the World Cup know too well, bathroom breaks are a serious dilemma, especially for those who don’t have a TV in the loo.  This biological necessity is exasperated by beer, which during World Cup matches also fuels a strong propensity to throw chairs and instigate riots.

5 Simple Ways to Save Water this Summer

According to the L.A. Times, the average American uses an estimated 98 gallons of water EACH day.  

Here are five simple ways you can save water, to help you conserve water this summer and take some pressure off of your drains.

1. Unless you are using it, turn the faucet off. How many of us still leave the water running while we shave or brush our teeth?According to ...