Best of SNO


Dr. Jerry Friedman and the roots of Shalhevet democracy

By Jacob Joseph Lefkowitz Brooks, Shalhevet High School May 7, 2020

For Dr. Jerry Friedman and his wife, Jean, it all began at their daughter’s graduation from Harvard University. That day, Dr. Friedman -- successful Los Angeles real estate developer specializing in...

UNCERTAIN: A sign at Canfield Elementary School in Beverlywood was an ironic reminder on Tuesday, when state School Superintendent Tony Thurmond announced all state public schools would remain closed through the end of the 2019-20 year.

Shalhevet to delay decision on reopening in-person school until after Pesach, Rabbi Segal says

By Sam Rubanowitz and Jacob Joseph Lefkowitz Brooks April 3, 2020

Shalhevet officials will defer a decision on whether to reopen on-campus school this year until after Passover, Head of School Rabbi Ari Segal said this week, adding that if things haven't changed by then,...

SPREAD: A van belonging to Hatzolah, whose volunteers provide emergency response in Beverlywood, Hancock Park and other Jewish neighborhoods,  was parked on Alta Vista Boulevard yesterday.  The group said local Covid-19 patients had interacted widely before being diagnosed.

YULA student tests positive for coronavirus after Bnei Akiva shabbaton; Rabbi Segal says spread to Shalhevet ‘inevitable’

By Jacob Joseph Lefkowitz Brooks, Shalhevet High School March 19, 2020

According to a late Saturday email from Bnei Akiva of Los Angeles, a student at Yeshiva University of LA (YULA) Girls High School has tested positive for coronavirus. Then on Sunday, both Hatzolah of...

HONORED: Rachel Lester gives a speech on Sept. 24 in Herzliya at the award ceremony for top soldiers in the Operational Directorate.

Shalhevet alum is awarded Best Soldier in directorate of the IDF

By Benjamin Gamson, Shalhevet High School February 10, 2020

Alumna Rachel Lester, Shalhevet class of 2012, was named an Outstanding Soldier in the Operational Directorate of the Israel Defense Forces this year, making her one of about 20 soldiers to be chosen by...

AWAITING: With the Senate impeachment vote coming Wednesday, Republicans are looking for a quick and easy acquittal of the President on two Articles of Impeachment voted by the majority-Democratic House of Representatives.

Poll finds less than one-third of Shalhevet students favor removing Trump from office

By Sam Rubanowitz, Shalhevet High School February 6, 2020

Seventy percent of Shalhevet students believe President Trump should not be removed from office in the current Senate impeachment trial, while 30% believe he should be. But there are significant differences...

2009: Bryant showcased championship and MVP trophies after the Lakers won the NBA Finals against the Orlando Magic in Game 5. It was the first time he’d been named Finals MVP.

Shalhevet remembers growing up with Kobe

By Alex Rubel, Adam Tizabi, Jacob Joseph Lefkowitz Brooks, David Saeedian, Rabbi Ari Schwarzberg, Nate Erez, Clara Sandler, and Maital Hiller January 29, 2020

Kobe Bryant, the five-time NBA champion who spent all 20 years of his basketball career with the Los Angeles Lakers, died in a helicopter crash Sunday. He was 41 years old. According to multiple news...

RIVALRY:  Firehawk and Wolfpack players fought for position to get a rebound in the Firehawks’ 55-41 victory over the Wolfpack on the opening night of the Glouberman Tournament last fall. Following Shalhevet’s CIF quarterfinal loss 56-48 to Palm Springs in February, allegations surfaced that the Valley Torah coach gave the Palm Springs coach information about Shalhevet prior to the game, though Valley Torah denies any “malicious” encounter.

Shalhevet announces it has suspended play against Valley Torah in basketball

By Alex Rubel, Shalhevet High School May 22, 2019

Shalhevet will refuse to play Valley Torah in boys’ basketball until the school’s head coach is replaced, because of help the coach provided to the Palm Springs High School Indians, the Firehawks’...

Students explore athletic opportunities beyond the Shalhevet gym

Students explore athletic opportunities beyond the Shalhevet gym

By David Edwards, Shalhevet High School January 3, 2017

As Shalhevet’s seniors watch for their college admission emails this month, their classmate Nathan Benyowitz faces a different kind of waiting game. While others are wondering about dorm life, food...

VIEWPOINTS: Now that it’s been a year since the pandemic arrived, we asked one student from each grade to share how this time has changed their lives.

OPINION: Four views of a (Covid) year

By Samson Taxon, Bayley Sandler, Avi Litvak, and Shira Elyaszadeh April 8, 2021

In a few decades, numbers and data might be the main vehicles through which people look back on the Covid-19 pandemic -- numbers of deaths, jobs lost and school on Zoom.  But there’s something else...

MORE: One in four residents of Los Angeles suffered from food insecurity during the first months of the Covid-19 pandemic, officials estimate. For low-income families, the percentage was almost half.

Essential workers, essential work: How local food banks learned to protect staff from Covid and still feed the hungry

By Keira Beller, Shalhevet High School April 5, 2021

Almost exactly a year ago, Los Angeles schools, businesses, travel, and just about everything else shut down to keep people safe from the coronavirus.   The city’s Jewish food banks didn’t have...

ASKING: Among other questions, Passover -- which starts this Saturday  night -- wonders why the seder night is different from all others.

How is your seder different from all other seders?

By Liad Machmali, Shalhevet High School March 24, 2021

“Really long,” “matzah pizza,” and “cleaning” are words linked to Pesach in most of our minds. But another buzzword that may pop up when thinking about the Jewish holiday that starts this Saturday...

BOTH: Rabbi Jonathan Perry of Chabad said it is a struggle to be seen as fully Jewish and fully Black. At top, from left, Town Hall was led by Agenda Chair Kate Orlanski, who interviewed Shalhevet teachers Ms. Valencia Wilson and Mr. Fred Leach, and Mrs. Chava Shervington of the Orthodox organization Kamochah.

Town Hall offers view of what it’s like to be Orthodox Jews who are Black

By Molly Litvak, Shalhevet High School March 18, 2021

Racism against Black Americans exists in the Jewish community too, according to four Black panelists -- two of whom are Jewish -- who spoke at Town Hall on Feb. 5 in honor of Black History Month. ...

MASKED: Dr. Eric Vail works in the clinical molecular pathology lab at Cedars-Sinai, wearing PPE to protect himself from Covid-19 samples he is studying.

Just blocks from school, doctors searching for U.K. variant of Covid-19 discovered California’s

By Juliet Wiener, Shalhevet High School March 12, 2021

California is known for the beach, movie stars, fashion, and now for its very own coronavirus variant. Originating in Southern California, this variant -- called CAL.20C, or the California variant --...

Caption: FOUNDER: Dr. Sam Gomberg, z

Dr. Sam Gomberg, former principal and architect of Just Community, has died at age 74

By Talia Davoudian, Shalhevet High School March 11, 2021

Dr. Sam Gomberg, former Shalhevet principal and Director of Moral Education and an integral contributor to the school’s Just Community, passed away at age 74 March 2 at his home in Crest Hill, Ill.,...

ABHORRED:  In video shown Feb. 9 at former President Trump’s impeachment trial, his supporters shouted “No Trump, no peace!” as they marched up the Capitol steps Jan. 6 hoping to stop the certifying of electoral votes from the November election. Shalhevet students were unanimous in condemning the action.

Two days after rioters invade U.S. Capitol, Town Hall seeks lessons through questions

By Talia Davoudian, Shalhevet High School February 17, 2021

Editors' Note: Because of the national climate of violence surrounding this issue, and to ensure the safety of students and their willingness to speak at Town Hall, this story gives only the first...

HOME: A Boiling Point survey found that all kinds of Jews give presents -- and don’t.

When it comes to Chanukah gift-giving, the ritual is whatever you grew up with

By Liad Machmali, Shalhevet High School December 15, 2020

This Chanukah 5780, senior Yael Rubin’s family will be exchanging gifts among aunts, uncles and cousins. Dean of Students Rabbi Ari Schwarzberg will be giving gifts just to his wife and kids. Freshman...

PAUSED: New tents in the parking lot last Thursday night waited for students who would have started on-campus Judaic Studies classes yesterday if not for a last-minute cancellation.

Partial reopening of in-person school is cancelled after LA Covid cases spike

By Molly Litvak and Benjamin Gamson November 19, 2020

At a meeting that lasted less than an hour, school officials decided Sunday to cancel yesterday’s scheduled reopening of on-campus Judaic Studies classes because of a sudden steep spike in local cases...

VIDEO: Local Businesses Board Up For Election Day

By Molly Litvak, Jacob Hoenig, Ariella Hirschhorn, and Barbara Seruya November 16, 2020

Just a few months after some George Floyd demonstrations turned violent last June, stores and businesses in Shalhevet neighborhoods boarded up their stores Nov. 2 in preparation for the possibility of...

RECOVERED: Stolen political yard signs were set up on the front lawn of Amanda Kogan in Beverlywood Oct. 5 so people could pick them up. Ms. Kogan posted on NextDoor that she'd found the signs, which had been dropped in a pile on Wooster and 18th streets.

YEAR OF THE YARD SIGN: Election’s conflicts and tensions are playing out on area front lawns

By Keira Beller, Shalhevet High School November 5, 2020

Jill Lefferman woke up early Oct. 5 to discover one of the political yard signs had been stolen off her lawn in the heart of Beverlywood. It was a Biden-Harris sign, with the phrase “B’H,” an abbreviation...

PICKUP: An Uber Pickup Zone at Westfield Century City Mall.

Prop. 22: In fight over rules, voters will decide app drivers’ future

By Talia Davoudian, Shalhevet High School November 3, 2020

Independent contractors or employees? That is the decision that Californians will have to make when they vote on Nov. 3 on Proposition 22. Proposition 22, if passed, would exempt Uber, Lyft, and...

DEFUND? Measure J on the Los Angeles County ballot would reduce the percentage of county dollars available for sheriff’s and jail funding.

Measure J hopes to answer George Floyd protests by reallocating some county funds

By Joshua Gamson, Shalhevet High School November 2, 2020

With racial justice becoming a higher priority for them, the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors decided over the summer to ask voters whether they should place 10% of county funds off-limits for law...

VOTE: An official California election drop box was ready for ballots at the Westside Jewish Community Center Oct. 21. Many people are voting by mail to avoid exposure to Covid-19 while waiting at polling places, and mail-in ballots can also be placed in drop boxes around the state.

Prop. 18 could make voting a reality for some 17-year-olds in California

By Benjamin Gamson, Shalhevet High School October 29, 2020

Some 17-year-olds in California may soon get the right to vote, depending on what happens with a proposition on the statewide Nov. 3 ballot.  Proposition 18 would amend the California state Constitution...

SMILES: President Trump (center) was applauded at the White House Aug. 13 after announcing agreements to normalize diplomatic relations  between Israel and the United Arab Emirates, with (from left), Special Representative for Iran Brian Hook, Special Representative for International Negotiations Avi Berkowitz, US Ambassador to Israel David Friedman, Senior Adviser Jared Kushner, and Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin.

UAE and Bahrain treaties could signal new era, Israel Consul-General says

By Molly Litvak, Shalhevet High School October 6, 2020

New treaties with the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and Bahrain -- only the third and fourth Arab countries to normalize diplomatic relations with Israel in its 72-year history -- will be economically beneficial...

AIR: Smoke from fires as that ravaged the West Coast filled the skies Sept. 13, shrouding the sun at Will Rogers State Beach in the Pacific Palisades. The nearest fire was the Bobcat Fire in Pasadena.

Orange skies, cancelled activities as epic fires fill the air throughout the West

By Gabriella Gomperts, Shalhevet High School October 5, 2020

Fires raging throughout the West grew so large earlier this month that davening was cancelled and Camp Firehawks activities were moved indoors, as a orange-yellow haze replaced the season’s typical blue...

ICONIC: Ruth Bader Ginsburg was famous for wearing carefully chosen collars to Supreme Court deliberation. Here she is pictured wearing a white jabot from South Africa, a favorite of hers.

EDITORIAL: Ruth Bader Ginsburg z”l: One of us, who rocked America

By Boiling Point Editorial Board, Shalhevet High School September 28, 2020

Ruth Bader Ginsburg may have been only 5’1, but she was a giant. Not the kind of giant you see at the top of the beanstalk, nor the kind that becomes memorable by living infamously. No, she was a giant...

OUTSIDE: Rosh Hashanah starts tomorrow night. With synagogues closed, many Shalhevet community members will be praying in socially distanced groups outdoors.

From backyard minyans to distanced dinners, Covid Rosh Hashanah will look and feel different

By Olivia Fishman and Tehilla Fishman, 10th Grade September 18, 2020

Shalhevet Dean of Students Rabbi Ari Schwarzberg thinks that it will be especially difficult to connect to God during the High Holidays this year. “There is a certain mood and certain energy that...

FIRE: Emergency personnel worked to extinguish an arson fire Aug. 25 at the Chabad Jewish Center in Newark, Del., which serves the University of Delaware’s Newark campus.

Arson at Chabad near U Delaware gives Div. 1 athlete a platform to oppose hate

By Benjamin Gamson, Shalhevet High School September 11, 2020

When Nathan Benyowitz saw pictures of an arson attack burning the Chabad Jewish Center serving the University of Delaware, he realized he had a platform to take a stand against hate. Nathan, who graduated...

Talia Tizabi, left, and Hilla Lasry, right, pictured at the 2019 Glouberman Tournament on Nov. 8, both said they support what the NBA players did.

Firehawk athletes support pros’ Jacob Blake walkouts

By Noah Elad, Shalhevet High School September 1, 2020

Shalhevet Firehawk athletes were unanimously supportive of professional athletes’ boycotting games in response to the shooting of Jacob Blake, an African-American man, by police in Kenosha, Wisc., Aug....

DIFFERENT: The way people consume media has changed, so The Boiling Point has decided to present news and interviews in a new format.

The Talking Point: Episode Five: Hope?

By Eli Weiss, Shalhevet High School May 26, 2020

In this episode, staff writer Juliet Wiener interviews science teacher Dr. Elizabeth Basheer on the why it may take so long to develop a coronavirus vaccine and Senior Editor Alex Rubel shares his...

MINCHA: An outdoor minyan observed strict social distancing March 18 in Hancock Park. Officials say that is not permitted in California or Los Angeles, although it will soon be allowed in New York.

New York allowing minyans, Los Angeles not yet

By Molly Litvak, Shalhevet High School May 22, 2020

New York Governor Andrew M. Cuomo announced Wednesday that religious gatherings of up to 10 people will be permitted there starting tomorrow, but Los Angeles rabbis say they have not heard anything about...

DIFFERENT: The way people consume media has changed, so The Boiling Point has decided to present news and interviews in a new format.

The Talking Point Episode 3: Community Means Community

By Sam Rubanowitz, Shalhevet High School May 1, 2020

In this episode, Senior Editor Alex Rubel shares some insight on remaining motivated during this time of quarantine; co-hosts Jacob Lefkowitz Brooks and Benjamin Gamson update the COVID-19 situation...

PERSPECTIVE: Social media has become a platform for fun in the time of Covid, including in the world of Jewish memes.

With memes and TikToks, teens lighten the mood of ‘corona break’

By Kate Orlanski, Shalhevet High School April 30, 2020

Earlier this year, social media seemed like the problem, blamed for causing unnecessary panic over the novel coronavirus and the disease it causes, Covid-19. But now, Generation Z is finding light in...

MEMORY: Seniors Maya and Jonah Tochner light a candle in honor of their grandmother, who was a survivor of the Shoah. Stories and artifacts submitted by 40 students and teachers can be seen at the bottom of this page.

Zoom assembly sparks daylong outpouring of family stories, inspiration for Yom Hashoah

By Jacob Joseph Lefkowitz Brooks, Shalhevet High School April 24, 2020

What seemed like a limitation ended up being a new way to connect to Jewish roots as pictures of holy books, ritual objects, hats and other heirlooms poured onto the Student Activities page on Schoology...

The Talking Point Episode 2: Change

The Talking Point Episode 2: Change

By Sam Rubanowitz, Shalhevet High School April 9, 2020

 In this episode, we cover COVID-19 news updates, new Shalhevet academic policies, the Zoom-Seder controversy, and student efforts to find meaning during these times. FEATURED: A special interview...

DIFFERENT: The way people consume media has changed, so The Boiling Point has decided to present news and interviews in a new format.

Welcome to ‘The Talking Point’

By Sam Rubanowitz, Shalhevet High School April 3, 2020

Given that society is so different right now under COVID-19, the Boiling Point is offering a new way for the community to access our news coverage. Welcome to the Talking Point. The Talking Point...

INTROSPECTION: On the turf March 6, the class discussed Purim and personal insecurity. A week later, the topic was  quarantine.

God, fragility and coronavirus: senior Tanach class seeks religious meaning of quarantine

By Sam Rubanowitz, Shalhevet High School March 26, 2020

Rabbi Ari Schwarzberg’s senior Tanach class held a Schoology discussion forum last Thursday on the religious significance of quarantine from the coronavirus. “Given the craziness and uncertainty...

CANCELLED: Firehawk girls flag football players stretched before their 30-2 rout of the YULA Panthers Sept. 16 at the Glendale Sports Complex. All athletics at Shalhevet -- practices and games -- have been postponed indefinitely.

Remer: All school sports shut down to contain coronavirus

By Alex Rubel, Shalhevet High School March 19, 2020

Athletics at Shalhevet have been suspended indefinitely, in response to the intensifying coronavirus outbreak, Athletic Coordinator Jeff Remer told the Boiling Point Friday morning. “I would have...

HOME: Senior Anna Weiss followed her SAS Biology class online during last Monday’s school closure “preparedness drill.” All classes will be held online next week, according to an email sent out by administration this afternoon.

No on-campus classes next week as school joins accelerating shutdown of L.A. due to coronavirus

By Sam Rubanowitz, Shalhevet High School March 19, 2020

Classes will move online starting next Monday for at least a week, school officials announced today, after two all-day training sessions for online learning and following news that most other Jewish schools...

TIMING: Health department officials who spoke to Shalhevet parents last night said wide coronavirus is inevitable, but measures such as school closures, hand-washing and social distancing could spread out new cases, giving hospitals time to keep up with the need for services.

Local school closures certain, timing undecided

By Jacob Joseph Lefkowitz Brooks, Shalhevet High School March 13, 2020

According to Los Angeles County public health officials who are advising Shalhevet, school will not be closing for now, and any closures will be timed to have the greatest impact on slowing the spread...

CROWD: According AIPAC’s website, more than 18,000 people, including 51 Shalhevet students, attended AIPAC’s annual policy conference in Washington, D.C., last week. Also there were some who had been in contact with a coronavirus patient in New York, and who were quarantined on their return.

Three coronavirus cases in people returning from AIPAC; one is in Los Angeles

By Jacob Joseph Lefkowitz Brooks and Benjamin Gamson March 10, 2020

Los Angeles County health officials announced today that one person from Los Angeles has tested positive for coronavirus after returning from last week’s American Israeli Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC)...

SCREEN: A Google Hangouts window shows IT Director Nick Parsons testing the web application for the online class trial set for Monday. School officials have planned a “preparedness drill” in case school closure is needed because of coronavirus.

Campus to close Monday as trial run for coronavirus shutdown tries out online classes

By Jacob Joseph Lefkowitz Brooks and Sam Rubanowitz March 9, 2020

By Jacob Joseph Lefkowitz Brooks, Editor-in-Chief and Sam Rubanowitz, Senior Editor School on Monday will beheld via Google Hangouts as a test for a possible future school shutdown over the coronavirus...

HIGHLIGHT: Attending the annual Red Sarachek Tournament is a big event not only for Shalhevet players but for their fans, many of whom fly to New York for the event.  Above, Firehawk then-captain and MVP Zack Muller leapt over rival YULA players in YU’s Max Stern Athletic Center in 2018.

Sarachek Tournament cancelled as coronavirus outbreak closes YU

By Jacob Joseph Lefkowitz Brooks and Alex Rubel March 5, 2020

UPDATED MARCH 5: Next week’s Red Sarachek Basketball Tournament at Yeshiva University has been cancelled due to fears of the coronavirus, Shalhevet Head of School Rabbi Ari Segal announced this morning...

PRECAUTION: An email sent out by the SAR administration March 3 announced a temporary closure of school after a parent was diagnosed with coronavirus.

SAR, two other day schools and Young Israel congregation closed by coronavirus case in New York

By Liad Machmali, Shalhevet High School March 5, 2020

Three Jewish day schools located in the New York area, Salanter Akiba Riverdale (SAR) Academy High School, Westchester Torah Academy, and Westchester Day School, announced yesterday that they would be...

UPCOMING: Residents of Iowa, whose flag is shown above, are casting the first ballots of the 2020 presidential contest at caucuses tonight.

Stark divide between teens and adults ahead of Iowa caucuses tonight, polls show

By Benjamin Gamson, Shalhevet High School February 5, 2020

Iowans are gearing up for the first presidential contests in the 2020 nomination process to be held tonight on Monday Feb. 3. An Iowa youth straw poll of the state’s middle and high school students...

Politics meets streetwear as presidential candidate Andrew Yang comes to Fairfax

By Sam Rubanowitz, Shalhevet High School February 3, 2020

Waiting in line for a Supreme clothing drop on Fairfax Avenue Dec. 19, senior Ben-Tsion Oliel was surprised to see a commotion down the block. Then he saw cars approaching with “Yang” stickers pasted...

Sophomores Miriam Saedian and Audrey Gold film a TikTok dance in an empty classroom

Addicted to TikTok

By Kate Orlanski, Shalhevet High School January 31, 2020

Spend a day roaming the halls of Shalhevet and you are bound to see flocks of teenagers filming each other dancing, lip-syncing or performing other antics clip by clip on their phones. This latest social...

SHOCK: Kobe Bryant and eight other people, including his daughter Gianna, died in a helicopter crash Sunday morning

We can hold two ideas at once

By Jacob Joseph Lefkowitz Brooks, Shalhevet High School January 31, 2020

I’ve felt a lot of things over the past few days. I was at first shocked, in complete denial that something could happen to someone I felt almost familiar with. Kobe existed when I was born and throughout...

BORDER: The Peace Arch, located at the border crossing between the U.S. and Canada in northwest Washington state, was built as a monument to American-Canadian friendship. Earlier this month, American citizens of Iranian descent were detained there for as much as nine hours in a crackdown after the killing of Iranian General Qaxxam Soleimani.

Iranian-Americans at school split on issue of border detentions of travelers

By Sam Rubanowitz and Liad Machmali January 30, 2020

Learning of new problems for Iranian-Americans at U.S. border crossings, Shalhevet students and faculty of Iranian descent were divided over whether they were being unfairly targeted or whether it was...

LATE: On the day of the vandalism, Nessah was open for Mincha, but employees continued cleaning and organizing the synagogue at 7:55 pm.

Suspect in Nessah religious vandalism incident had no known ties to hate groups, BHPD says

By Liad Machmali, Shalhevet High School January 23, 2020

Banging on his door around 7 a.m. on Saturday Dec. 14, a congregant waited anxiously to inform Rabbi David Shofet that it was not going to be a typical Shabbat morning at Nessah, their synagogue, located...

DEMANDS:Speakers at the event urged Gov. Newsom to more severely restrict California’s fossil fuel developments.

Greta Thunberg finds local angle on climate change

By Jacob Joseph Lefkowitz Brooks, Shalhevet High School January 6, 2020

Thousands of protesters gathered outside of Los Angeles City Hall Nov. 1 heard the leader of the world’s youth climate change movement connect wildfires that were burning that day near the Getty Museum...

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