Rabbi Dov Nimchinsky – Head of School
Rabbi Nimchinsky joins TASA from Pittsburgh, PA where he has served as Assistant Principal for grades K-8 at Hillel Academy of Pittsburgh since 2010. Prior to that, Rabbi Nimchinsky was the Director of Curriculum & Instruction at the Robert M. Beren Academy in Houston, where he also taught middle and high school Judaic Studies.
He has been awarded the Irving L. Samuels Outstanding Teacher Award for Judaic Studies, the Grinspoon-Steinhardt Award for Excellence in Jewish Education, as well as a grant from the AviChai Foundation to develop technological tools to assist in the teaching of Judaic Studies. Rabbi Nimchinsky has developed a strong national reputation among Jewish Day School educators as an excellent school leader.
Rabbi Nim (as he is affectionately called) holds a Masters Degree in education and has been teaching adults, children, and teens for over 28 years.
He and his wife Rivkey (a technical writer, publications specialist, and educator) have been blessed with 9 wonderful children ranging in age from seven to twenty-six, to go along with two grandchildren. They and their children are very excited to join the TASA family.
Rabbi Yossi Marrus – Director of Judaic Studies; 5th-7th Grade Judaic Studies Teacher
Rabbi Yossi Marrus brings two decades of educational, administrative, and rabbinic knowledge and experiences to our school.
Rabbi Marrus began teaching Judaic Studies at the Oholei Torah Day School in Brooklyn, NY and upon his arrival to San Antonio began teaching at the former JNA Day school. In 2009 Rabbi Marrus became the Judaic Studies Director and part of the administrative team at the former Eleanor Kolitz Academy. Since the founding of the Shmuel Bass Academy of San Antonio (TASA) in 2013, Rabbi Marrus has been part of the administrative team and tasked with establishing and directing the Judaic and Hebrew studies department.
Rabbi Marrus has been active in Jewish education in many positions including; director of Camp Gan Israel, Chai High instructor, founder and director of Torah Teens, C-Teen advisor, and has served on multiple national educational and youth education boards. He currently also serves in the capacity as the Associate Rabbi and Administrator of the Chabad Center for Jewish Life and Learning.
Rabbi Marrus received his BA of Religious Studies from the Rabbinical College of America and after studying abroad in Israel, received his Rabbinical Ordination from Central Yeshiva Tomchei Tmimim Lubavitch, as well as the Yeshivat Chabad of Safed, Israel. He and his wife Malkie have raised their six children in San Antonio, and have been dedicated to providing their children with a proper Jewish Day School education. Rabbi Marrus is passionate about imparting the rich and uniquely Jewish experience that TASA has to offer, and is committed to creating a feeling of Ahavat Yisrael and Derech Eretz throughout the halls of our school.
Rabbi Marrus has had remarkable success in connecting with many children, teens and young adults. In his own words “I am blessed to be a part of the lives of so many young Jews, and it gives me great Nachas and joy to watch them grow up into proud, engaged, and vibrant Jewish adults”.
Mrs. Samantha Price – Office Manager
Jessica graduated from the University of Central Arkansas in 2009 with her degree in Early Childhood Education. She is a certified Texas teacher in Core Subjects from Pre-K to 6th as well as English as a Second Language.She has substituted from Pre-K up to 5th grade and was a part time teacher in a 5th and 6th grade special education room in Honolulu. She has taught Kindergarten for 3 years. Her first year was in Panama City, Florida and the other 2 in Ewa Beach, Hawaii with a brief time in 2nd grade as well with ESL experience.
She is also an Air Force wife with 2 young boys, Liam, age 4, and Asher, age 9. She has been recently stationed in Hawaii for 3 1/2 years until moving to San Antonio. She enjoys crafting, reading, and running in her spare time.
She is very happy to be in San Antonio and excited to be teaching Kindergarten again this upcoming year!
Mrs. Endzweig (Mrs. E) graduated from Touro College in Brooklyn, New York, with a degree in Psychology with a focus on Special Education. Her experience teaching 4th grade at Hebrew Academy of Margate gave her a lot of insight into teaching children with different types of learning styles. She was very involved in spelling bees, and coached children who competed in regional spelling competitions. She is always looking for fun educational contests for kids to enter to challenge themselves.
Jessica Diric began her teaching career in 2001. She has dedicated those years teaching grades pre-k up through third grade, in Killeen ISD, Harlandale ISD, and here at TASA. Jessica is a 2001 University of Montana-Western graduate, with her degree in Elementary and Early Childhood Education. In 2009, she graduated with her Master’s of Education in Curriculum and Instruction. Her teaching certifications include General Studies Prek-8th, Special Education K-12, and English as a Second Language (ESL).
Once again serving as TASA’s kindergarten teacher, Mrs. Diric looks forward to this upcoming and exciting 2015-16 school year, where she will also be the lead teacher. Jessica looks forward to being an active liaison between the teaching staff, administration and the parents.
Aside from her love of teaching young children, she is a wife and mother of two daughters, Elena who is 15, and Amaia who is 3 1/2 . Jessica spends her spare time with her family, gardening, running outdoors, and traveling.
Margaret Melvin began her teaching career in 2000. She is a certified Texas Biology teacher in grades 1-8, as well as a Self-Contained educator with experience in grades 2, 3, 4, and 5. Ms. Melvin received her Bachelor of Science in Interdisciplinary Studies with a minor in Biology from Southwest Texas State University (Texas State). She is completing her Masters of Education in Integrated Science at Our Lady of the Lake University. Her passion is science, and she thrives on the challenges of improving and building upon the ways children think.
Ms. Melvin’s science training and background include active involvement in curriculum writing at the school, district, and state levels. She has presented science and integrated professional development workshops for schools, districts, Region 20 Education Service Center, and with the Texas Regional Collaborative (TRC), and OLLU. Ms. Melvin has successfully built framework for science education from the ground up as a school science facilitator and mentor to other teachers.
Ms. Melvin is an enthusiastic, committed educator with an innate ability to understand and motivate our students. She is skilled in adapting to students’ diverse learning styles with differentiating instruction to meet individual student needs that make her a wonderful addition to our TASA family.
Aside from her passion to educate children, Ms. Melvin is a mother of two children, ages 11 and 13. She devotes her time to reading, volunteering animal rescues, supporting her children in sports, and enjoying time at her parents’ farm with her family.
JUDAIC & HEBREW STUDIES
Rabbi Levi Grossbaum – 1st-8th Grade Judaic Studies Teacher
Rabbi Grossbaum is a native of Stony Brook, Long Island where he grew up attending the local community Jewish day school and in a rabbinical home. He studied at the Tomchei Temimim Rabbinical Academy in Brunoy, France and at the Oholei Torah Academy in Brooklyn New York and spent a year abroad as a student rabbi in the Jewish community of Caracas, Venezuela.
Rabbi Grossbaum received his rabbinical ordination and B.A. Of Religious Studies from the Rabbinical College of America. He has been teaching Judaic Studies in Hebrew Schools and summer programs for many years and has taught as a full-time teacher for the last three years in ULY Yeshivah – Ocean Parkway and in the Gan Yisroel Day School in Brooklyn, NY.
Rabbi Grossbaum’s enthusiasm, attention to detail and passion for education as well as his experience working in communal positions are sure to make him a wonderful addition to the TASA team. Rabbi Grossbaum and his wife Naomi are the proud parents of four children.
Mrs. Michal Barker – K-8th Grade Hebrew Language Teacher
Michal Barker is a native Israeli who throughout her youth lived in Israel, Spain, and the United States. She speaks fluent Hebrew, Spanish, French, and English. While residing in the United States, she studied at the Hebrew Academy Day School in Miami Beach. After high school she worked as a flight Attendant for Continental Airlines where she was hired as a Hebrew speaker and worked in that position for a little over 3 years. Mrs. Barker holds a degree in Anthropology from the University of Maryland College Park and graduated with honors. While pursuing her degree she taught at the Jewish Community Center in Rockville, Maryland and after her graduation continued to teach at the Hebrew Academy in Rockville, Maryland as a Teacher’s Assistant in Judaic and Hebrew studies.
Mrs. Barker moved to San Antonio, Texas in July, 2012. She was the Pre K-4 lead teacher from 2012-2013 at the Gan Gani Preschool. Shortly after, she taught Hebrew and other languages to adult students at SEFLA Languages. In addition to teaching at SEFLA languages she has also used her language skills to translate documents in different languages including Hebrew. Morah Michal recently completed her training at the Tal Am Hebrew language institute.
“We are excited to have Morah Michal on board to continue and enhance the excellent Ivrit program we have at TASA” said Rabbi Yossi Marrus, Judaic Studies Director at TASA.
Art – Mrs. Debra Phelps
Music – Mr. Juan Peña
Computers & Physical Education – Mrs. Rivkey Nimchinsky