BASIS Independent Manhattan's newly appointed Head of Operations rejoins Ms. Rizzo from our sister campus BASIS Independent Brooklyn. Mr. Berman served as the inaugural Director of Student Affairs at the Brooklyn campus until 2016 when he assumed the role of interim Head of Operations. He was an instrumental part of the development and growth of our school in Red Hook.
Earlier this year, Mr. Berman's family grew with the birth of his baby daughter Demi, who turns one in September. The Bermans reside on the Upper East Side, which prompted the transfer to Manhattan.
Mr. Berman holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Human Development from Binghamton University, Master of Arts in Elementary Education from St. Johns University, and Certification in Child Developmental Psychology from Queens College.
Mr. Berman is driven by a growth mindset, which explains his commitment to BASIS Independent Manhattan's success. He is passionate about collaborative problem solving to get to the heart of an issue and lives by the mantra that "smart is not something you are - it is something you become."
We caught up with Mr. Berman while at the Manhattan campus to ask a few questions on the minds of families heading into fall.
What exactly is your role as Head of Operations? Many people have not heard of that role at other schools.
My focus is to improve the operational systems, processes, and policies at the school. This includes overseeing the facility to ensure that students are learning in a safe and distraction-free environment. Additionally, questions regarding tuition, transportation and our lunch program can be directed my way.
When will Manhattan parents find out about lunch provider, bus stops, and after school choices?
We are almost ready to roll out to families all they need to know about lunch and transportation offerings. That is precisely what I am working on at the moment. We are partnering with providers and developing welcome packets that provide detailed information parents need to prepare for the transition to our campus this fall. An announcement regarding our bus and lunch providers will be unveiled in an upcoming newsletter.
If families have names of guitar teachers, fencing groups, or sewing teachers that they like, should they send them your way?
Yes, we will have a team in place that will report to me starting this summer to manage the after school offerings, but if families have specific local teachers or groups they want considered for our program now, please send them along to firstname.lastname@example.org. One great benefit of living nearby for more than five years is that I am already very entrenched in the neighborhood.
Are you enjoying working closer to your home?
It is wonderful. The biggest change is in the morning being able to see my wife and daughter. I can now read Demi stories at night and put her to bed.
Now I am just getting into new routines. I'm thinking about biking to work, since we are so close. Right now I walk or take the bus and proudly wear my BASIS Independent Manhattan gear across Central Park. That has started many conversations with families about the new school.
I am thrilled to be a part of BASIS Independent Manhattan's first year and look forward to helping our community take root on the Upper West Side.