Rabbi Moshe Dear, headmaster of Yavneh Academy in Los Angeles since 1999, was selected to represent private schools as a 2013 National Distinguished Principal. This is the 30th year that the National Association of Elementary School Principals (NAESP) has presented this prestigious award. Rabbi Dear is one of only six private school principals from across the country, and the fourth yeshiva principal ever, to receive this award.
Rabbi Dear was nominated and selected by a committee of yeshiva principals and administrators through a search process conducted by the yeshiva services division of Agudath Israel of America and by Torah Umesorah – The National Society for Hebrew Day Schools, said Agudath Israel Education Affairs Associate Dovid Tanenbaum.
Before Yavneh Academy, Rabbi Dear was headmaster of the Heritage Academy in Longmeadow, MA, and director of Judaic Studies at the Hebrew Academy of Tidewater, VA.
“At the helm of every successful school is a successful principal,” said Gail Connelly, NAESP’s executive director. “Our National Distinguished Principals program provides us with an opportunity to recognize the outstanding leadership of these principals and their commitment to creating successful learning communities. Because of them, students thrive academically, teachers grow professionally, and communities are strengthened.”
In October Rabbi Dear will travel to Washington for two days of activities planned to honor and bring well-deserved recognition to the elementary and middle-level educators chosen by the states, the District of Columbia, plus private and overseas schools.
Criteria for selection of the principals require that the honorees are active principals of schools where programs are designed to meet the academic and social needs of all students and where there are firmly established community ties with parents and local business organizations.
Rabbi Dear received his semicha from Ner Yisroel Rabbinical College in Baltimore, and a graduate degree from Johns Hopkins. He has been named Educator of the Year and Distinguished Educator during his tenure in Tidewater, and served as a board member of the Los Angeles Board of Jewish Education. He and his wife live in Los Angeles and are members of the Young Israel of Hancock Park.