WEST ORANGE, NJ — Golda Och Academy’s Upper School Director of Student Life and Arts Department Chair, Jordan Herskowitz, was recently selected to serve on the Educational Theatre Association’s (EdTA) Model Curriculum Framework Project.

Out of more than 100 applicants for the program, EdTA selected 12 two-member teams of high school theatre educators and teaching artists from across the country to create a high school curriculum framework and a series of standards-based instructional units in targeted areas of theatre. Herskowitz has been paired with NYC teaching artist Brian Curl for the musical theatre unit.

This prestigious project, which is supported by a grant from the National Endowment for the Arts, brings team members together for webinars and online collaboration. In addition, participants will attend a professional development symposium in Cincinnati in July.

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“Nearly 30 states have adopted new theatre standards in the past two years," said James Palmarini, EdTA director of educational policy. "To meet those standards, our teachers need a framework that articulates what is important to teach and learn in theatre. Along with creating and sharing quality examples of standards-based learning and teaching, the secondary goal of this project is to demonstrate how theatre educators—classroom teachers and teaching artists alike—can measure the effectiveness of their teaching and the learning of students.”

Participating in the Model Curriculum Framework Project will also provide Golda Och Academy students with a unique opportunity that only a select group of schools in the United States will have, as the pair will workshop their ideas, testing new curriculum approaches to musical theatre with select GOA high school students in the fall.

“This will be an incredible experience for our students to be at the forefront of innovative theatre curriculum in high schools across the country,” said Herskowitz. “I’m honored to be part of this collaborative project.”

Golda Och Academy’s Head of School Adam Shapiro said it was wonderful to see the EdTA recognize that Herskowitz is "both an exceptional educator and talented artist."

"These talents that our students have benefitted from during his tenure in this school will now go farther and wider and have an influence on arts education in many new ways," said Shapiro. "We couldn’t be prouder of Mr. Herskowitz and look forward to seeing the results of his learning on display here at Golda Och Academy.”