I hope everyone has been keeping cool and finding ways to continue to enjoy their summer despite the heat. The arrival of August also means that it is time to register for Religious School. Congregation Beth Shalom’s Religious School provides opportunities for Jewish children in Columbia to gather with a large number of other Jewish children. Students not only make Jewish friendships but also learn about Torah, Jewish holidays, customs, rituals, Israel, history, songs and culture. The Religious School has classes for grades preschool through twelfth. Our youngest students are our preschoolers who are ages 3 & 4 and we request that they be out of diapers. The Religious School has a wide array of teen offerings that are important in developing our youths’ ability to be active adult members of any Jewish community. High school/teen programs are available to students in public school grades 9-12.
Once again the majority of our staff is returning this year so we will have very few new teachers. Our teaching staff is primarily comprised of Mizzou students who have a wealth of Jewish knowledge, teaching experience, camp experience, involvement with Hillel, our community and their communities at home. We are fortunate to have such an active group of young adults serving as teachers and role models for our children. Our Rabbi is actively involved in the Religious School and will be meeting with individual classes. Grades 7 & 8 will study Torah with the Rabbi. The Rabbi will also teach Jewish ethics, values and legends to grades 4-6.
The Congregational Board has not increased fees this year. However, the general operating budget of the congregation underwrites a large portion of the cost of the Religious School therefore it is necessary for you to send in your pledge forms along with your registration. Tuition is $240 for preschool through second grade and grade 8 (classes without two hours of Hebrew/week). The tuition for grades 3-7 is $480. The high school programming fees are $240. This fee covers their NFTY regional fee, local youth group fee, and payment to the youth group advisor etc. The fee is the same whether you partake in all of the teen programming or just some of it.
The Congregation is committed to educating all of our children and tuition assistance/scholarship is available. If you would like assistance please be sure to request it on your registration form. We have many families in need of tuition assistance, so if you are able to donate to the scholarship fund your assistance would be greatly appreciated.
All grades except high school start at 9:30 AM on Sundays. Grades preschool through second will meet from 9:30-11:30AM. Third through seventh grade will meet from 9:30 AM-12:30PM on Sundays and on Wednesdays from 6:30-7:30 PM. Grade 8 will meet from 9:30 – 12:30 ( this includes junior youth group time 11:30-12:30 ). High School students will meet on Sundays from 10:00 AM – 11:30 AM for classroom discussion and youth group will meet from 11:30 – 12:30. The high school class will be cooking this year while exploring Jewish culture and holiday foods.
Sunday mornings will start in the new building for grades 4-8 having music in the sanctuary. Grades preschool through third will go directly to their classrooms and they will conclude with music in the sanctuary. High School will meet in the youth lounge/library in the farm house. Wednesday Hebrew will start in the sanctuary with tefilah.
Regular attendance at class is necessary to be successful. Bar and Bat Mitzvah students and families please be sure to look at the policy manual to be on track with requirements and expectations.
We will have several special events this year including school led Shabbat Services, Consecretion, Bar/Bat Mitzvah workshop, Purim Carnival, Chanukah workshop and a model Seder for Passover along with a closing day activity. There will be a minimum of once a month family learning classes. These dates will be established one month in advance and will primarily be taught by our many knowledgeable congregants
Please return registration and pledge forms by August 26
Families should arrive early on the first day of classes. Please stop by the registration desk to pick up name tags and find out where to proceed from there. Additionally you should sign up for snacks, consider signing up for committees, meet the teachers and socialize with other parents while having coffee and bagels.
Please down load and fill out registration forms (fifty percent of your payment is due before the first day of class), send in your pledge forms, and if you are able - donate to the scholarship fund.
Feel free to call me with questions or if you need to reach me during class time at 673-2371. I am looking forward to seeing everyone on August 26.
Director of Education and Youth Programs
Congregation Beth Shalom