Nadia Kinani, Lower School Principal
Nadia grew up in Nazareth, and moved to Jerusalem later in life for her education. She has a BA in special education, and an MA in education management. Nadia worked with children with disabilities in East Jerusalem for ten years before she joined the Hand in Hand staff as an elementary school teacher, the same year she her eldest daughter entered 1st grade in the school. In the years since then, Nadia was promoted to principal in 2010, and has worked hard to make the dream of this bilingual school a reality. Nadia is married to Omar, and they have three daughters, two graduates of Hand in Hand, and one who is a high school student. In her free time, she loves to bake – just never with a recipe.
Arik Saporta, Upper School Principal
Arik is a long-time manager and educator. He is the former director of a community center in the low-income Jerusalem neighborhood of Kiryat Yovel, and went on to help start Etgarim, a nonprofit organization providing stimulating outdoor experiences to special-education teens. Later he entered the Mandel School for Educational Leadership and, working with a few other dynamic activists, created Jerusalem Venture Partners, an agency attempting to close educational gaps for underprivileged and struggling students. He is married with four kids, two of whom are students at Hand in Hand..
Itay Diner, Principal
Itay has a BA and MA in computer science from Haifa University. He worked at Intel in the world of hi-tech for the past six years developing algorithms in the area of computer vision and 3D. Prior to that he taught math in a school in Haifa and was also a Board member of the early learning school in Tuval where he led a major pedagogic change and resolved conflicts between members of the educational staff and between members of the community. Itay is now making transformative pedagogic changes in Hand in Hand's Galilee School, focusing on Project Based Learning (PBL) as a fundamental pedagogic tool. He lives with his family on a kibbutz in northern Israel.
Rasmiya Sh'hada, Vice Principal
Rasmiya has a BA in Middle Eastern studies, an MA in education management, and is a licensed dialogue facilitator. She joined the Galilee School in 2000 as an Arabic language and culture teacher, while she also worked for the Ministry of Education running workshops about gender equality in the Arab school system. She is currently still active in working to develop women’s leadership in the Arab population, as well as in other Jewish-Arab shared communal projects. Rasmiya was an integral part of building the unique integrated curriculum in the Galilee school. As Vice Principal, she continues to take a leadership role in the pedagogy and strategic planning for the school. She is married to Yosef, and they have three children: Majd, Muataz, and Amal.
Hasan Agbaria, Principal
With a Ph.D. in sciences and botany from Hebrew University in Jerusalem, and as a graduate of the Mandel School for Educational Leadership, Hasan has worked as a high school science teacher and as a principal at an Arab junior high. He has lectured on management and organizational consulting at the University of Haifa, and has worked with the Ministry of Education as a district supervisor and professional mentor for new school principals. He is married with two children who attend the Hand in Hand school.
Masha Krasnitsky, Vice Principal
Masha was born in Ukraine and immigrated to Israel over 20 years ago. She has a BA and a teaching certificate in early childhood education. For the past 13 years, Masha has been an educator in schools, summer camps, and Hebrew language programs for immigrants. In 2004 she came to the Wadi Ara school and found a place where she could grow and make an impact in an integrated, bilingual setting. Masha believes that the Bridge over the Wadi school is special not only because it brings Jews and Arabs together, but because it is an excellent school, that encourages learning, curiosity, and gives children the ability to influence their surroundings. Masha is married and has three sons, one of which is a graduate of the Wadi Ara school.
Moran Ofek, Principal
Moran has been a social activist and educator since he was 16 years old. He holds a BA in education as well as a teacher’s certificate. As a teenager and young adult, Moran took leadership positions in a local youth movement, training the younger counselors and participants. He has since then directed programs to aid African refugees in Israel, by recruiting volunteers, creating community structures, and helping to establish a preschool that served refugee children. Moran came to working with Jews and Arabs through his work at an empowerment and rehabilitation program for at-risk Jewish and Arab youth. In addition to directing the Haifs Preschool, Moran is currently writing his master’s thesis on the challenges of integration in the Israeli school system, and in his free time, makes wine in his small at-home vineyard.
Anat Itzhaki, Principal
Anat was one of the founders of the Jaffa Preschool, and was the Hand in Hand Community Organizer in Jaffa before stepping into her role as principal. Anat has been working in Jewish-Arab education for twelve years as a group facilitator for youth dialogue programs locally and around the world. Anat was also on staff of Sadaka-Reut, a Jewish-Arab non-profit organization, as a dialogue facilitator, youth coordinator, and later as the chairman of the management board. Anat has a BA in psychology and sociology and is pursuing her MA in social sciences. She lives with her husband and three children, Itamar, Yasmin, and Maayan. Yasmin is in pre-k in the Jaffa Preschool.