Administrative adjustment

Changes to the personnel for new school year

Maya Preuss, In-depth Editor

After a turbulent year full of unknowns, CESJDS is returning to the building with a new set of administrators who are excited for the future of the school, including new high school principal Dr. Lisa Vardi. 

Following last year’s extensive search process for a new principal that resulted in the hiring of Vardi, she is enthusiastic to return to the building and engage with students and faculty of the JDS community.

“I’ve been here for seven weeks, and I feel like I’ve come back home on so many different levels,” Vardi said. “I’m just super excited and my plan is to be here for a long time.” 

As part of her role as high school principal, Vardi will be leading an advisory to get to know students better. Vardi also hopes to extend her role and teach in the future, as she taught AP Comparative Government and Politics for over 20 years, even while she was Executive Director of Teaching and Learning at The Bullis School. 

Additionally, Director of Upper School Admission Emma Hart is returning to campus after gaining experience as Director of Admissions at Academy of the Holy Cross. Hart worked at JDS for four years, and many students were saddened by her departure, including sophomore Darya Dayanim. 

“I was really sad when she was leaving because we knew my little brother was still coming in and as a whole family we really liked her because she dealt with me and my older brother,” Dayanim said. 

After the time away, Hart is looking forward to returning to JDS and reconnecting with faculty and students and meet the new members of the community. She is also excited to implement new plans to recruit more families to the school. 

“I think there’s a lot of great things that JDS does almost every day that we can make more accessible to our prospective community,” Hart said. “I think it would be really cool to always welcome prospective families to sporting events, for example, or after-school robotics or performing arts shows that happen on the weekends.” 

Hart also hopes to implement grade gatherings for new and returning families, whether it is students spending time together after school on campus or a gathering at a families’ house. Hart is also thrilled to be returning to the building when it is starting to return back to  normal. 

“I feel lucky that I have come in at the tail end of COVID and I say that with some hesitation because we’re very much not at the end, but I was surprised at how normal it felt even coming in on my first day,” Hart said. 

JDS also welcomes a new Director of Food Services Operations to the community, Mark Glauser. For the past 10 years, he worked as the executive chef at Lakewood Country Club Rockville, Md., following working for Hyatt Hotels in Washington, D.C. and South Florida. 

“I wanted a better life balance with working with food service and I wanted to get back a little to my Judaism,” Glauser said. “I lived in Israel for many years and I grew up going to a Jewish day school. So I wanted to do a little bit of that and everything worked out by coming to JDS.”

With the new additions of Glauser and Vardi, as well as many other faculty, and the homecoming of Hart, there is a lot of excitement for the school year and the return to some normalcy. 

“I am honored and humbled to be in this position,” Vardi said. “Being a high school principal is not easy, but so far it’s been great and fun; the faculty and staff here are amazing, and I look forward to a really long future here at JDS as the high school principal and to getting to know students.”