"He went back and started from scratch," she said.
While attending West Philadelphia High School, where he graduated, Mr. Grossmann took classes at Gratz College in Cheltenham. That's where he met his future wife, who was taking classes there while a student at Cheltenham High School.
They had two daughters, Ari and Deena, who died in 1993.
Mr. Grossmann, who served in the Navy, earned his bachelor's and master's degrees at the University of Pennsylvania.
His first teaching job was at Furness Junior High School. He was the principal for 15 years at Jones Junior High School, and later rose to the position of regional superintendent for the School District in South Philadelphia and then Northeast Philadelphia.
After leaving the district, Mr. Grossmann began teaching urban education and educational administration at Temple and eventually became a full-time associate professor. His last teaching job was at Gratz College, working with doctoral students.
Mr. Grossmann was a longtime teacher at Temple Beth Sholom, where he served on the board of directors and then as president.
He loved gardening and the arts, especially music and theater, his wife said.
In addition to his wife and daughter, Mr. Grossmann is survived by two grandchildren.
A funeral was held Wednesday at Temple Beth Sholom. Condolences may be sent to the family via e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Contributions may be made to the Deena Grossmann Memorial Fund at Gratz College, 7605 Old York Rd., Melrose Park, Pa. 19027; Temple Beth Sholom, 1901 Kresson Rd., Cherry Hill, N.J. 08003; or a charity of the donor's choice.
Contact Robert Moran at 215-854-5983 or email@example.com, or follow @RobertMoran215 on Twitter.