In an effort to continue providing students in the Santa Clarita Valley with educational resources, Temple Beth Ami is offering a free Hebrew school program with an innovative hybrid model.
“We were working on implementing a hybrid model anyways, but this situation obviously sped everything up,” Rabbi Mark Blazer said. “We’re using some models that have already been in operation for others across the country, so I think we really came up with a good program.”
The idea for a hybrid model came as the synagogue wanted to adapt a program around the busy schedules of young people, allowing flexibility in when and where studies were conducted, Blazer said.
That being said, the program came at a perfect time when in-person classes have been halted.
“With the current times, we have to be a little bit more creative and think outside the box,” said Jennifer Twitchell, education director for Temple Beth Ami. “Our education committee was trying to come up with ways to take the school out of it and the fun back into it, because after spending six hours in school, spending another two hours in a Hebrew school did not seem like something the kids wanted to do, so we came up with a hybrid format.”
The program will give students a week to complete Hebrew and Judaic studies lessons online, and while Hebrew will be a bit more structured, each Judaica lesson will be targeted at each student’s specific interests, with weekly 30-minute online sessions with their teachers.
In addition, when in-person activities are allowed to resume, students will be able to join in monthly Sunday programs, which are designed to be more family-based.
“We wanted to involve our community more, so what we decided to do was have it once a month for families … (with) parent workshops that will take place while the kids are in elective classes,” Twitchell added.
The program will allow those in the community with special skills to teach both parents and students about health, parenting or Jewish cooking, for example.
“There’s so many things and activities that take place outside of a textbook and outside of reading around a table, and that’s what I am so proud of with this program,” Twitchell said. “I’m just very excited to be able to work with such a great team of people to bring this to our kids.”
“One of the things that’s so special about this is that we have had some really generous donors that have allowed us to offer this program for free to any child,” Blazer added.
The program is expected to begin in late August and go through the school year, though anyone can join at any time. An informational Zoom meeting is scheduled Aug. 16, with more information expected to be provided on the program’s details.
Assembly Bill 1457, authored by Assembly Members Cervantes and Reyes, and supported by Santa Clarita’s Senator Scott Wilk, Assemblyman Tom Lackey and Assemblywoman Christy Smith, represents an important step forward in jumpstarting California’s economic recovery.
The Los Angeles County Department of Public Health on Friday confirmed 22 new deaths and 1,281 new cases of COVID-19 countywide, including 25 new cases in the Santa Clarita Valley, where Henry Mayo Newhall Hospital reported its 23rd COVID death.
As wildfires rage up and down the West Coast, a panel of experts from Stanford University said Friday that exposure to high levels of pollution from wildfire smoke is the equivalent of smoking seven cigarettes a day.
The COVID-19 quarantine provided some with time to catch up on their favorite TV series or try a new hobby, but for Valencia resident Jeff Bomberger, it has earned him a ticket to the Catalina Film Festival.
Members of the civilian Los Angeles County Sheriff Department watchdog group on Thursday called for Sheriff Alex Villanueva to resign over his department’s lack of transparency on fatal police shootings and other issues.
Governor Gavin Newsom on Friday signed AB 1876, further expanding access to the California Earned Income Tax Credit to ensure all California tax filers, specifically undocumented ITIN filers who are otherwise eligible, may qualify for the CalEITC and the Young Child Tax Credit.
Several landlords have filed a lawsuit against the state, Los Angeles County and multiple Southern California cities, including Santa Clarita, over eviction bans, seeking reimbursement for unpaid rent due to COVID-19 eviction-protection ordinances.
Washington and Oregon, members of the Western States Pact, will participate with California in piloting a project to test promising exposure notification technology, California Governor Gavin Newsom announced Thursday.
The Supplemental Coronavirus Relief Fund Spending Plan approved Tuesday by the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors includes an allocation to L.A. County Library to provide digital support to individuals and communities disproportionately impacted by COVID-19, specifically by expanding the recently-launched Laptop & Hotspot Loan program that allows cardholders to borrow a Chromebook and wireless hotspot kit, and by extending the WiFi network range at libraries, to cover parking lots.
Following a summer hiatus, the Santa Clarita homeless task force met Wednesday to discuss the 2020 Greater Los Angeles Homeless Count for the first time since its release — and concluded that keeping a separate local count may be the solution to an apparent undercount of local homeless in the countywide tally.