Spotlight on Portland Jewish Academy


AREA OF SERVICE: Jewish Education (early childhood, day school, afterschool) | 503-244-0126
2022 ALLOCATION: $187,590
MISSION: As a Jewish day school, we strive to ensure an academically rich environment that honors the whole child. PJA nurtures and inspires Jewish engagement, kavod/
respect and responsibility for the world in which we live.

Portland Jewish Academy is moving beyond the constraints imposed during the pandemic and bringing back many programs that connect students to each other, the Jewish community and the world. The day school has resumed its buddy and mishpacha (family) programs, which bring together students from different grade levels. All-school Shabbat and holiday programs also have resumed. Families and volunteers have been welcomed back into classrooms. Overnight trips for students in fifth through eighth grades also are returning.
“We provide need-based financial assistance to ensure that no student is unable to attend PJA for financial reasons,” says PJA Executive Director Steve Albert. “This year, we awarded over
$1 million in assistance. We could not offer all of the financial assistance that we provide to families without the Jewish Federation’s support.”
More information about financial assistance, such as typical awards based on income, can be found on the PJA website.
A new comprehensive campus plan is being developed for both PJA and the Mittleman Jewish Community Center, which share the Schnitzer Family Campus. Both members of the design team of Portland’s Opsis Architecture and Chicago-based 180 Studio have extensive experience working with schools as well as community centers. 
“We’re excited to develop a plan that will allow PJA, and the MJCC, to serve the community in the future as schools and best practices in teaching and learning continue to evolve,” says Albert.
PJA was founded as a community day school in 1986 when Hillel Academy and the Jewish Education Association merged. In addition to the day school for students in kindergarten through eighth grade, PJA serves infants through pre-K in its Early Childhood program. PJA’s afterschool program includes onsite and off-campus programs at Portland public schools.


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