This past summer, driven by a desire to create a sustainable system of innovation in our school and supported by a grant from the Jewish Education Innovation Challenge, Akiba-Schechter began the process of creating the first Research & Development Department in a Jewish Day School.
The Akiba R&D Department studies, develops prototypes, researches, and scales new teaching and learning approaches, practices, and systems that advance relevant learning for our students and the field of education. Our R&D system ensures new programs, models and ideas are thoughtfully studied, implemented, and sustained. In many companies, R&D departments play an integral role in the life cycle of a product. For us, at a Jewish Day School, we believe the R&D Department plays an integral role in the lifecycle of teaching methodologies and student learning.
The R&D Department researches and develops approaches, practices, and systems that:
are driven by global trends
have a strong relevance to our school’s mission and core values
have potential to significantly transform teaching and learning
have sudden urgency or meet unexpected needs
The R&D Department focuses on five areas:
Research for new programs or models
Development of new programs or models
Updates in existing programs or models
Quality checks on existing programs or models
General research on educational trends and innovations