With “an outpouring of support from the St. Paul Jewish community, especially the United Jewish Fund and Council,” the Annette Newman Day School at the Talmud Torah of St. Paul (TTSP) will continue to offer its Jewish and general educational program to students in kindergarten through fourth grade.
The day school has informed families about alternatives for students in grades five through eight, including supplemental Jewish education at TTSP or day school at the Amos and Celia Heilicher Minneapolis Jewish Day School.
In a special meeting this week, the UJFC board of directors voted overwhelmingly to continue to provide financial support to the Talmud Torah of St. Paul for continuation of its day school program, even though its enrollment has gone down.
“TTSP is a jewel in our community, it provides a valuable education for our kids with small class sizes and an emphasis on developing critical thinking skills and building a strong Jewish identity,” Eli Skora, UJFC executive director, said in a press release. “As the central planning and fundraising arm for St. Paul Jewish needs, we will continue to work with them to make sure they are supported for years to come and operate in a fiscally responsible fashion.”
Future allocations from the UJFC are dependent upon demographic trends and results of annual fundraising campaigns.
The school needed to enroll 70 students by April 30 to remain financially viable in 2010-2011 (4-2-10 AJW). Whether or not the school reached that number, its board of directors had already decided to eliminate seventh and eighth grades.
“We are excited to be able to continue offering a TTSP education to K-4 children and yet we regret that we were not able to maintain the viability of grades 5-8,” Lisa Cohen, chair of the school’s board of directors, said in a press release. “We are grateful to the United Jewish Fund and Council and to the broader Jewish community for supporting our school during a difficult time.”
TTSP has provided Jewish education to students in the St. Paul area for 62 years. Sara Lynn Newberger, director of education and principal of the day school, says the school is unique in the community.
“We are pleased to be able to return next year and continue offering a strong and well-rounded education to our K-4 students,” Newberger said. “This school is so special and has been a gem of this community for generations.”
Jon Parritz, incoming UJFC president, past president of TTSP and parent of three TTSP day school students and graduates, said that “the school’s professional and volunteer leadership is to be commended for their heroic efforts to adjust to the demographic and economic challenges.”
“We are all going to have to continue to work hard to support this wonderful institution to position it for the future,” he said.
In addition to financial assistance, the UJFC, together with TTSP, is exploring ways it can help the school to operate more efficiently with respect to office administration and fundraising activities.
TTSP is accepting applications for its preschool, day school and afternoon/evening programs. For information, visit: www.ttsp.org or call 651-698-8807.