EdTA selects GOA educator for prestigious theater project

Photo Courtesy of Erin Sternthal
Jordan Herskowitz, Golda Och Academy’s director of student life and arts department chair, has been selected for the Educational Theatre Association’s Model Curriculum Framework Project.

WEST ORANGE, NJ — Jordan Herskowitz, Golda Och Academy’s Upper School director of student life and arts department chair, has been selected to serve on the Educational Theatre Association’s Model Curriculum Framework Project. Out of more than 100 applicants for the program, EdTA selected 12, two-member teams of high school theater 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 theater. Herskowitz has been paired with New York City teaching artist Brian Curl for the musical theater 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 this July.

According to James Palmarini, EdTA director of educational policy, “Nearly 30 states have adopted new theater standards in the past two years. To meet those standards, our teachers need a framework that articulates what is important to teach and learn in theater. Along with creating and sharing quality examples of standards-based learning and teaching, the secondary goal of this project is to demonstrate how theater 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 Herskowitz and Curl will workshop their ideas, testing new curriculum approaches to musical theater, 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 theater curriculum in high schools across the country and I’m honored to be part of this collaborative project,” Herskowitz said.

“It’s wonderful to see the EdTA recognizing that Mr. Herskowitz is both an exceptional educator and talented artist,” GOA Head of School Adam Shapiro said. “These talents that our students have benefited from during his tenure in this school will now go farther and wider and have an influence on arts education in many new ways. 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.”