The Los Angeles Unified School District (LAUSD) has given a green light to a proposal for a dual-language charter elementary school to be located in Van Nuys offering classes in English and Hebrew.
When the Albert Einstein Academy for Letters, Arts and Sciences (AEA) opened in August 2010, part of the draw for parents was the chance for students at the Santa Clarita charter middle and high school to study Hebrew. Since then, AEA backers have submitted petitions to set up elementary schools in the Newhall School District, Los Angeles Unified School District and Ventura Unified School District, without success. In August 2012, a revised version of its twice-rejected petition for an elementary charter was submitted to the Saugus Union School District in Santa Clarita. Among the changes in the newest version was eliminating offering Hebrew at the school, at least initially.
The Saugus Union School District is set to hold a third hearing on Sept. 19 regarding a petition to establish an Albert Einstein Academy for Letters, Arts & Sciences (AEA) charter elementary school in Santa Clarita. If approved, the school would be the second in the AEA family of charter schools, along with a charter high school in Santa Clarita that started its third year in August. It would also be one of a handful of charter schools on the West Coast where Hebrew is taught as a second language. Classes in Mandarin would also be offered.
The chances of a new elementary charter school offering Hebrew language classes opening in Ventura County next fall diminished last week. In a decision disappointing the school’s supporters, the Ventura County Board of Education rejected an appeal to open a new local branch of the Albert Einstein Academy for Letters, Arts and Sciences (AEA). The appeal fell in a 3-2 vote taken by the board at its March 28 meeting.
"We want to nurture a diverse body of students who are passionate about learning, engaged in their community and have respect for themselves and others."
I write about education a lot because it's important for the Jewish community to have a strong public school system. Education is part of the Jewish culture. Many Jews can't afford private schools, and their kids deserve an education good enough to send them to college. Moreover, strong public schools are good for everybody, Jews and non-Jews.
It's 7:55 a.m., and parents are dropping off their kids in front of the Ben Gamla Charter School along busy Hollywood Boulevard in Hollywood, Fla. Amid a noisy melange of languages -- English, Spanish, Hebrew, French and Russian -- the uniformed children say their goodbyes and rush off to class at one of the nation's first Jewish-oriented charter schools.
When the school year starts Aug. 20, Schorr's daughter and Barnett's daughter will be among the 430 or so students attending the new Ben Gamla Charter School in Hollywood, Fla. The taxpayer-funded institution says it will offer two hours of instruction a day in Jewish-related topics but not religion.