Israel | Kiryat Yam 

Kiryat Yam has become synonymous with World ORT in recent years, following our multi-million dollar investment into the town.  

Upon its establishment in 2007, World ORT Kadima Mada (WOKM) quickly developed a partnership with the municipality and began working to advance educational offerings, for the benefit of Kiryat Yam’s children. Kiryat Yam, in Israel’s northern periphery, is now one of WOKM’s flagship YOUniversity Centers of Excellence.  

At the request of, and in partnership with, the local municipality, WOKM has set about transforming the town, home to a large Ethiopian immigrant population, that has suffered from under-investment for many years.  

WOKM invested in three affiliate schools – Rodman Junior High School, Levinson High School and Rabin High School.  

The investment in the town and the resulting new facilities attracted and incentivized local families who had previously been tempted to move away, to remain in the area.  

ORT’s long-term focus on Kiryat Yam has resulted in the municipality receiving the national education award from the Ministry of Education. 

STEAM Specialists 

The D. Dan and Betty Kahn STEAM Center at the Rodman School provides much-needed STEAM educational opportunities for hundreds of Middle and High School children. 

The Center was originally established more than 15 years ago to improve opportunities for students. The new STEAM facilities are built on the belief that in today’s ever-changing world, teachers and students need to engage in real-life multi-disciplinary scenarios involving concepts and ideas from science, technology, engineering, art and math.   

The Center’s Maker Space includes 3D printers and robotics activities for students – it is a space for hands-on, multidisciplinary activities and provides opportunities that would not ordinarily be available to students in regular classes. 

Our YOUniversity Kindergarten Robotics program – supported by the Max M. & Marjorie S. Fisher Foundation – has been running for over a decade, and currently encompasses initiatives at five kindergartens in Kiryat Yam. Five-year-olds are provided with Lego toys which they can assemble into robots in the shape of cars, cranes, and other similar objects. The children then play with the robots and learn to control them electronically.  

A successful pilot program of Robotics for 1st Graders is also now running in Shirat Hayam School in Kiryat Yam, with the aim of expanding this initiative to 2nd Graders in the coming years. 

Future Developments 

The construction of a state-of-the-art auditorium complex in the town is ongoing thanks to the long-standing support of ORT donors including the Wolfe Family, the Farber Family, the Ishbia Family and the ORT America Michigan Region. 

The Farber Family Auditorium Complex will include 550 seats and a building with 12 classrooms. Its distinctive foyer and main entrance hall are designed to host exhibitions and small gatherings and to welcome attendees to the center. The exciting new development represents a further multi-million dollar ORT investment in Kiryat Yam. 

Discussions are also underway aimed at renovating the Mada Park Campus in the town. Established 15 years ago, it served as an activity center for residents of Kiryat Yam and the surrounding areas. It incorporates a number of science and technology labs, as well as an open-air science park full of hands-on activities that demonstrate physics theories, an oceanarium, a planetarium, a professional athletic field, an Ethiopian Heritage Center and a sea sports center.  

The park was built largely thanks to the generosity of the late Betty Schoenbaum. 

Levinson High School for Excellence 

Levinson High School for Excellence is a Middle and High school in Kiryat Yam, previously affiliated to WOKM, which serves more than 200 students aged 12-18.  

About 30 percent of the students come from families of Ethiopian origin; some are classified as at-risk youth and are under the care of the Ministry of Welfare. 

The educational program implemented in the school through the collaboration with WOKM, together with the upgrading of the structure and services offered in the school, resulted in a significant increase in graduation success.  

In the three years between 2016 and 2018, under WOKM’s guidance, the school increased the rate of students learning 5 Units of English to a rate of 48% of students, well above the national average. 

WOKM is currently considering future collaboration opportunities for projects at Levinson. 

Visit the Levinson High School website

Rabin High School 

Yitzhak Rabin High School provides Middle and High school education to students aged 12 to 18 from across Kiryat Yam. 

It is the only secular high school in the city of 40,000 people and was an affiliate of WOKM from 2016 to 2020. 

The High school offers a selection of majors including: Health Systems, Mechanics, Graphic Design, and Science. In addition, it offers humanities majors that combine Art, Theater, and Music.  

The school maintains a music ensemble and dance troupe of students who perform at school and community ceremonies and events. 

Over the years, Kadima Mada has invested in the school’s structural needs including major renovations and equipping computer classrooms and the chemistry lab with state-of-the-art equipment including 3D printers. 

Kadima Mada also ran teacher training and ensured that students and teachers at the school were integrated into a variety of international programs such as conferences, workshops and competitions.  

WOKM is currently considering future collaboration possibilities for projects at the school. 

Visit the Yitzhak Rabin High School website: 

Visit the Yitzhak Rabin High School website