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Update on the 2020-21 JID School Year

These past few months have been very unsettling and I know that we are all looking for ways to find normalcy and regularity in our lives. I appreciate your patience as we have worked to craft a re-opening plan for JID that balances our commitment to your child’s Jewish education with our dedication to protecting your child’s health and well-being. Just as Byram Hills has for their schools, the clergy, staff, and leadership of CBY spent a lot of time this summer working on different plans depending on whether we would be able to open in-person, use a hybrid system, or conduct JID virtually.
I am happy to report that, in keeping with our tradition of following the lead of the Byram Hills School District, the 2020-21 JID School Year will commence on time, and in-person beginning September 15. A virtual track will also be available for those who prefer.
Many factors were considered in reaching this decision but the two overwhelming ones were:

  • Our belief that the plan we have created will enable us to open JID in a safe and responsible way.
  • Results collected by the Byram Hills School District that showed that parents with children in grades K-7 favor in-person learning over virtual.

I am sure you have several questions about what this will look like, and a full FAQ will be coming soon. For now though, here are some of the highlights:

  • All grades, K-7 will come back to JID full time and in-person with mask-wearing, social distancing, and temperature-taking protocols in place.
  • During the months of September, October and the beginning of November, JID classes will be held outside (weather permitting), with classes being held in large spaces (Social Hall and Sanctuary) when we cannot gather outside.
  • Hebrew Pods for grades 4 - 7 will be held indoors in small groups in the JID classrooms.
  • Bathroom usage will be limited to one person at a time, with the bathroom being cleaned every 20 to 30 minutes throughout JID. 
  • Byram Hills has informed us that the Activity Bus will not run this year.
    • New drop-off and pick up procedures have been put in place to address this.
  • In keeping with COVID-19 protocols on singing, the following program changes will take place:
    • No singing/chanting during Hebrew Pods.
    • No in-person tefila.
    • B’nai Mitzvah coaching will take place virtually.
      • Students must be enrolled in JID to receive coaching from Cantor Sugarman.
      • Missed coaching time may result in the necessary change of B’nai Mitzvah date.
  • Programs will be available for any student who requires a medical exemption from in-person learning.
  •  Security protocols have also been adjusted to meet the needs of executing this plan.
  • We are prepared to pivot to virtual learning if CBY has to close as the result of a positive COVID-19 diagnosis.
    • We have learned a great deal about virtual learning since last Spring and are prepared to offer a far more robust and “user-friendly” program if needed.

In order to properly plan for classes, we need your child's registration. Please click here to complete a JID Registration Form.
While many hours went into crafting this re-opening strategy, we all understand that the situation surrounding the COVID-19 crisis is constantly evolving and our plans will evolve with it.
Congregation B’nai Yisrael’s clergy, staff, and leadership remain steadfast in our commitment to you and the community as a whole. We believe that the decision we have made is in the best interests of helping your children on their journey of Jewish discovery.
On behalf of all of us, thank you in advance for your patience as we work to implement this re-opening plan. Please be in touch with me directly if you have any questions.
Melissa Cohavi

Thu, June 13 2024 7 Sivan 5784