Weekly Newsletter – January 15, 2021

January 15, 2021  / 2 Shevat 5781

Shabbat Begins: 4:25 p.m.   Shabbat Ends: 5:37 p.m.   
Parsha: Va’eira: Exodus 6:2 – 9:35
Spirit Day 2007 – Snow on the ground and Max wore shorts!
In memory of Max Vinegar, King David Class of 2007.

Thinking of Max evokes in me, quite quickly, three words: shorts, skis, and kindness. And I know these are likely similar memories for virtually everyone who knew Max.

In the entire time Max was at King David, he never missed an opportunity to wear shorts. Each spirit day, regardless of theme, season, or occasion, there he would be, smiling with both pride and relief that his knees had been set free for the day. The more I got to know Max, I could see this “uniform” (and certainly not our school uniform) suited him best–casual and laid back, much more representative of his fun-loving, easy-going nature.

I know the skis are a given. In the yearbook for Max’s graduating year I had written, “Max is a creative student who has developed many clever techniques to make it seem like he’s not thinking of skiing”. He was reasonably content in my classes, but he produced his best work when we could come to a consensus on including some aspect of skiing into his written assignments. His Hamlet essay was a stretch.

More than shorts and skis though, Max’s kindness shone through for everyone. Always smiling, happy to lend his time or a hand to someone who needed, Max was appreciated and valued by staff and students alike. Other than disagreeing on what conditions warranted a “snow day” Max’s affable and kind nature was apparent to all who met him. While the King David uniform was not a “fit” for him, being a Mensch – our most prized school value – most certainly was.

May his memory be for a blessing.

~ Alex Monchamp, Deputy Head of School

Anne and her husband, Matt, on a trip to New Zealand
King David High School is thrilled to welcome a new member to its administration team. Anne Bonnycastle has been appointed as Assistant Head of School: Director of Teaching and Learning. Anne will become part of our King David Family after Passover.

“We are really excited to have Anne join our King David Administration Team,” said Russ Klein, Head of School. “She is a seasoned school leader with diverse experience in developing and leading strategies that support school-wide program establishment and improvement. Anne has been recognized for her excellent team-building skills, mentoring, program vision and implementation. I am confident that she will add value to our overall educational goals.”

Anne has over twenty years of experience as a music teacher and program director. She has built exceptional programs from the ground up at two local independent schools. Anne is a strong leader with expertise in building collaborative teams and enjoys mentoring individuals using coaching methods.

Most recently, Anne worked at Crofton House as the Head of the Arts and Applied Skills and Technology department, and Chair of Academic Heads, steering the school through assessment reform, as well as directing choirs, orchestras and musicals. Prior to that, she served as director of choirs and orchestra at West Point Grey Academy.

Anne holds a Bachelor of Education, Masters in Educational Psychology and is currently a Doctoral Candidate at Boston University. 

When asked about what drew her to King David High School, Anne commented: “I am closely connected with a number of King David families, and have long admired the school’s close, caring community, their high academic standards and their dedication to social justice. I am so excited to have this opportunity to work with such a compassionate and collaborative team, and can’t wait to meet the students, families and teachers at King David.

Anne’s husband, Matt, is a physiotherapist and clinic owner, originally from New Zealand. They have two children in university: Dave in Mechanical Engineering at UVic, and Ali, studying Musical Theatre at Sheridan in Ontario (blame her summers spent at the JCC doing Gotta Sing! Gotta Dance!). 

Leo Kallner and Talia Charach

On Monday, Mr. Dichter and Grade 9 students Talia Charach and Leo Kallner represented King David in helping host the Israeli Minister of the Diaspora, Omer Yankelevich. Due to travel concerns the minister visited Vancouver over Zoom. She met with community members from the Jewish Federation, local Synagogues and many other agencies. We shared a short school video and the value of our Israel Trip program that has seen 355 students travel with us since 2009. Talia and Leo shared how not being able to travel to Israel last year was a disappointment (both have siblings who have participated in this amazing experience). They both look forward to a future trip to make connections with Israeli peers and to bring their Judaic Studies learning to life. 

Our sincere thanks to the JFGV for their invitation to participate with Minister Yankelvich!

This week in Holocaust Studies 12, Jeff Balin, a second-generation Holocaust survivor, joined our class to speak about his experience growing up. Throughout the presentation, Mr. Balin shared photos, his family background, and some moving stories. Hearing these stories from his perspective allowed us to hear first-hand how much being a child of Holocaust survivors can affect you, and greatly broadened our perspective on the subject. We are so appreciative of the time he took out of his busy schedule to come to speak to us. Thank you, 
Mr. Balin!

~ Abbey Kape, Grade 12

The Grade 10 Hebrew students have been practicing their spoken Hebrew, and recently did so via a debate. The topic was video games, with students debating whether they felt they were a positive or negative influence. 

The Krell Family: Robert and Marilyn Krell; their children Shoshana and Shawn Lewis, Simone and Howie Kallner, and Michaela and Matthew Singerman; 
and their grandchildren Mattea, Julian and Charlie Lewis, Estie, Leo, and Davey Kallner, and Shael, Bo, and Mikol Singerman.

Last week we made a couple of errors in our congratulations to Robert Krell for being named a Member of the Order of Canada. Let’s just say we had a good holiday!

I wanted to address these errors personally as Robert has been such a positive influence for me. My father, who turns 91 this April, is a Holocaust survivor. Robert welcomed my dad, and encouraged my sister and I to attend with him the World Federation of Jewish Child Survivors of the Holocaust and Descendants in 2019 in Vancouver. This was extremely powerful for all of us. Through Robert and Marilyn’s creation of the Elie Wiesel Remembrance Award for a King David student, I have become an avid reader of Elie Wiesel’s work – I recommend his writing to all, not only for the importance of what he has to say, but for the eloquent way in which he says it. We are proud to have the Krell Family as part of our King David family.

~ Russ Klein, Head of School

Mazal Tov, Shmuel and Reut!

With thanks to HaShem, Alexander Hart and Kathryn Selby are honoured and delighted to announce the engagement in Jerusalem of their son Shmuel Hart (Class of 2016) to Reut Rappoport, daughter of Rabbi Jason and Meira Rappoport of Alon Shvut, Gush Etzion, Israel.

We love to “kleib nachas and share the successes and happy milestones of our alumni. Please remember to share them with us!

Shabbat Shalom!


BeyachadBC Welcome and Launch

Wednesday, January 20
6:30 p.m.

JCC Sports Dinner – Virtual

Wednesday, March 3

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