We understand that this is a trying time for you and your family, trying to figure out what your local school district is offering for your child(ren) and how to keep your family safe. You have many decisions to make and the decision about registering your child(ren) for religious school normally isn’t required before Labor Day! We are starting in person classes two week early this year, on Sunday, August 30, because of the Jewish holidays. For those choosing our online option, classes begin Sunday, September 13.
Part of our response to COVID-19 is to place our classes in larger learning spaces so the students can be six feet apart. In order to do this, we need to know how many students will be coming to class in person. Therefore we are asking you to register as soon as possible, today if possible, at unitedjewishschool.org. For those registering for the in-person program, please remember that our policy is that your child(ren) must be up to date on their vaccinations. We ask that you provide a vaccination form that you can get from your pediatrician or your local Health Department before the first day of school.
Children in pre-K through Grade 4 will be attending class at Temple Emanuel, and children in Grades 5-10 will be attending classes at Congregation Ahavas Israel. If we need to cancel in-person classes for any reason, we and the teachers are ready to smoothly transition to online learning. We have purchased a new curriculum for K – 7th grade that has been designed for teaching online. Class for all grades will be held at the same time and for the same length of time online as in-person.
Please also remember that for children coming to class in person, each Sunday morning, at 7:00 a.m., we will email you a link to a simple, seven question, on-line health form which you will fill out for each of your children. You must complete the health form in order for your child(ren) to be welcomed into the building. All students will be required to wear face masks as they enter our buildings. These masks must be worn by all students throughout the morning.
Because of additional protocols in place for arrival, it is especially important for all students to arrive on time. We ask that parents begin to drop off their children at Temple at 10:15 am so that we can socially distance entry. Classes will take place from 10:30 am to 12 Noon. Drop off and pick up at Temple will take place in the front of the building and NOT at the parking lot entrance. Students will be greeted by staff members and escorted to class. We ask that parents remain out of the building.
Pick up will begin at 12:02 pm. We ask that parents form a single file line of cars in the front entrance of the building. Students will sit socially distanced by classes in the sanctuary until their ride arrives. All families with children at the Temple Emanuel campus will be sent a numbered tag, unique to that household. Students should become familiar with this number. When a car arrives with this numbered tag on its dashboard the number will be announced. Children will be escorted by staff to their car. Staff will have a master list of all the numbers assigned.
We ask that parents begin to drop off their children at the school wing entrance to Ahavas Israel beginning at 10:30 am so that we can socially distance their arrival. Classes will take place from 10:45 to 12:15 pm. Students at Ahavas Israel will be dismissed by grade level beginning at 12:17 PM. We ask parents to park and remain with their car upon arrival. Parents will then communicate with their children as to where they are parked via text or hand wave or motion.
If a student tests positive for Covid-19 on any day following attendance at Sunday school, the campus on which he/she attended will be closed for the next two Sundays. We will inform the entire school community of the reason of the closure, but we will respect the medical privacy of the individual. However, we will inform those who may have had close contact so that they may be tested.
Because of the challenges of Covid-19 we have decided not to offer early morning Hebrew on Sunday mornings or midweek Hebrew on Wednesday afternoons. Supplementary Hebrew will be offered virtually with our Hebrew instructors. Students who sign up for this program will be contacted by one of our teachers who will coordinate weekly 30-minute sessions. Hebrew sessions will be offered each week that we have Sunday classes.
We recognize that some families are not comfortable bringing their children for in-person classes. For these students we are offering a virtual alternative for the entire 2020-2021 school year. These classes will be team taught by Sharon Spungen and Shoshana Jackson. The first day of classes for our virtual program will be Sunday, September 13. These classes will then meet every Sunday that our in-person classes meet. Virtual classes will follow a different time schedule and several grades will comprise each class. Kindergarten-Grade 2 will meet from 10:00 to 10:30 am. Grades 3-8 will meet from 10:45 am to 12:15 pm and will split the time between Judaica and Hebrew.
If anything is not clear, please reach out to us – we want to answer your questions and hear your concerns.
Rabbi Michael Schadick, Rabbi@grtemple.org
Rabbi David Krishef, firstname.lastname@example.org
Interim Directors, United Jewish School