Student Life

Boarding life is a central tenet of GHIS learning. This becomes your home as well as your school, and we want all students to feel secure, comfortable, and happy.

At GHIS you will find an international community that celebrates multicultural voices. Lifelong bonds will be formed with your peers as you share experiences with people who are both similar to you and different. You will be responsible for your extracurricular life, planning and coordinating educational and social activities. Each aspect of boarding life is geared towards helping you achieve your educational and personal goals while at GHIS, and to continue growing outside the classroom.


A key part of boarding life are our weekly meetings when we come together for activities ranging from intentional community building, to workshops on sexuality and racism, and dialogue circles about current events.

Led by the boarding team, these activities serve as an opportunity for our counselors and gap year students to share their wide range of skills with the GHIS community.

Leadership Opportunities

Students are involved in the running of the school, making decisions that affect them and finding solutions to problems that arise. The Student Leadership Council is elected twice a year to represent the student body and give feedback to the GHIS administration and boarding teams. The council meets weekly with a representative from the boarding team, the head of school, and the head of boarding to discuss ongoing campus events, community building, and ideas for enhancing community life.

Since Givat Haviva is recognized as the main center for shared society in Israel, it hosts many international politicians and dignitaries. GHIS students are routinely invited to present the school to visitors, giving them high-level experience in public speaking while offering unique opportunities to network with international influencers.

Student Committees

Committees are an important part of student life at GHIS because they enable students to take an more active role in shaping a particular aspect of the community.

Committees work together to create programming for the student body, ranging from holiday parties to culture theme weeks, from election information sessions to recycling campaigns. They provide another path for students to determine their extracurricular programming and daily life at school.



Community and Well-being

Culture, Holidays, and Traditions

Campus Safety


With the support of the school administration, students have developed a set of guidelines that each member of the GHIS community commits to every day. These ensure that we create the safe, welcoming, and warm environment we value so much.

Host Family Program

Living side-by-side with students from different backgrounds develops intercultural awareness, which is further enhanced through a host family program in local towns and villages. International students are assigned a host family by the school, providing them with important home-away-from-home experiences while in Israel. During off-campus weekends we recommend international students stay with their host family. In addition, Israeli students are encouraged to invite their peers to their family home.

If you are interested in hosting a GHIS student, please call Hadas at 054 216 8182.

Campus Facilities

With 17 hectares of mature grounds to enjoy, students can find large green spaces and quiet spots to study. The campus library, learning center, and student lounge provide a variety of spaces for informal individual and group study after school hours. An arts center, language center, and mediation center offer additional facilities for extracurricular learning.

Events on the Givat Haviva campus are open to GHIS students and include conferences, concerts, and cultural events. Sports and athletic activities currently enjoyed by students include soccer, basketball, running, ultimate frisbee, martial arts, and yoga. The school has a fitness center, gym, turf field, basketball court, outdoor training facilities and access to a swimming pool.

GHIS dormitory buildings are separated between males and females. Dorm rooms accommodate two to three students each and include a private bathroom. Rooms are equipped with everything needed for personal relaxation, individual study and independent growth. There is a common area in each dormitory with a refrigerator and coffee/tea facilities.

At GHIS, we provide a variety of nutritious food choices. Based on a Mediterranean diet, students enjoy three meals per day and snacks are available at all hours. Givat Haviva maintains a kosher dining hall. We provide vegetarian, vegan and gluten-free options at every meal, as well as special accommodations for those with food allergies. Students are encouraged to organize cooking as a group—a popular activity to create and share favorite national dishes.

Givat Haviva is a pluralistic campus that welcomes people from all religious denominations. Students who wish to practice their religious tradition and require school support are encouraged to discuss their needs and coordinate appropriate conditions with the boarding team.

The boarding team includes the director of boarding and boarding counselors. Boarding counselors live with the students on campus providing 24/7 support and guidance. The boarding team is responsible for pastoral support, health care and nutrition, as well as for extracurricular activities and in particular the CAS program and the community-building program.

There is a nurse regularly on campus and 24/7 medical care is available at a local clinic.

At GHIS, we appreciate that a student’s emotional health is as important as their physical well-being to enable them to reach their leadership and academic potential. An educational counselor and therapeutic counselor work together to offer individual and group therapy for social and emotional support. They are available for ‘drop-in’ sessions for students. The school also provides workshops on subjects such as time-management, managing stressful periods, and adjusting to new situations.


Extracurricular programs take advantage of Israel’s natural diversity and rich biblical history, offering unique cultural and religious encounters, maritime education, group hikes, archaeological expeditions, and field trips in Israel from the Sea of Galilee in the north to the Red Sea in the south.

David Zehavi

Hebrew Literature

David joined GHIS because he was looking for the right educational establishment to develop personally and professionally. As soon as he heard about GHIS, he realized that it suits his values.

“As someone who has always been committed to coexistence in Israel, I see GHIS as a great vehicle to bring young people together in an accepting and non-prejudicial way.”

As well as being a teacher, David is also trained in special needs education at all school levels.

David holds a joint Honors B.Ed.  in Special Education ages 6 to 21, and BA in Literature at Oranim College