As it has done for the past decade, Cheder Menachem of Los Angeles continues to set high standards in the arena of education, in general, and within Chabad chinuch, in particular. This time they’re doing it by launching the largest “Charidy” matching-funds drive to have been attempted in the program’s history.
For the next 24 hours (from 12:00 noon on Tuesday, 12/30/14, until 12:00 noon on Wednesday, 12/31/14), Cheder Menachem will be appealing to friends and admirers around the world – including Cheder alumni and relatives of those who have benefited, or are currently benefiting, from the program – to help the school reach its goal of $250,000 in new scholarship and program revenue.
Donors Dr. Ze’ev and Varda Rav-Noy, Rabbi Yehuda and Simi Feigin and friends of Cheder Menachem – Ari and Nomi Greenwald, SparklesandSuspenders.com, Yossi and Gila Lipsker, Yossi and Sara Mayberg and Yossi and Yehudis Schneerson have pre-committed to match every dollar generated by the campaign at a 4:1 ratio – provided the objective is reached. In other words, the greater community’s pledges must amount to at least $62,500 by 12:00 pm on Wednesday if any of the funds pledged are to be collected at all.
To make your timely 4×1 donation to Cheder Menachem, please click here.
Under the lay leadership of a proactive Board of Directors that is constantly in-step and in close coordination with its dedicated and motivated faculty members, Cheder Menachem continues to distinguish itself as a model of educational excellence among Lubavitcher institutions of chinuch. Observers point to a number of basic policies instituted by the Cheder over the past twelve or so years as being instrumental to the program’s success, including: always paying its Rebbes and teachers on time, cutting all fat from the budget and establishing performance as the only criteria for holding any teaching or leadership position in the school.
The upshot has been that in, in recent years, Cheder Menachem has renovated and updated its existing facility in an aesthetically-appealing and technologically-advanced manner, including the installation of smart-boards in every classroom and the establishment of computer labs, resource rooms and high-tech student response systems. It has also acquired the property next door to meet the demands of future growth and expansion.
On the educational front, the Cheder’s team of highly skilled, professional and passionate educators now includes a full-time educational therapist, social worker, Hebrew reading specialist and Tzivos Hashem (special programs) director on staff – all of whom see every student as a precious individual. Cheder students participate in the annual Mishnayos B’aal Peh Awards Program and the Chidon HaMitzvos meeting every challenge with enthusiasm.
“The results speak for themselves: over the past decade, enrollment in the Cheder has climbed from 180 to 315 students.”
On December 16, 2014, Cheder Menachem’s Head of School, Rabbi Mendel Greenbaum, was presented with The Milken Foundation’s “Educator of the Year Award,” making him the third Cheder educator to have been thus honored in the past eight years. Rabbi Greenbaum, however, does not see the award as a celebration of his own achievements, but rather as a ringing endorsement of the school as a whole.
“Among the many commonalities you will find across the spectrum of this Cheder,” says Greenbaum, “is a spirit of cohesiveness and an overarching desire for yet greater achievement – to do things even better than before. There’s this dynamic positive energy that has a phenomenally reciprocal and crossover effect from one department of the school to the next; the same energy one can feel emanating from every classroom and across every hallway every moment of every school day.”
Cheder Menachem has been recognized for being at the forefront of innovation by introducing cutting-edge methods of teaching, analyzing and testing in its Judaic Studies program, as well as in its General Studies’ programs which, under the direction of veteran educator Mrs. Yudi Blauner, has exceeded California State Core Standards by instituting an assessment-based curriculum and a wide array of exciting co-curricular programs. It has also been instrumental in developing creative curricula and action-plans designed to ensure that no child falls through the cracks.
It is based upon all of the above that the Cheder’s leadership has been asked to serve on various advisory committees for school development and enhancement and that its efforts have been recognized by the Menachem Education Foundation in its formation of the Zekelman Standards for Judaic Studies. Cheder is affiliated and accredited by the Merkos Chinuch Office and continues to benefit from their Seminars and workshops. In June of 2014, Cheder Menachem also received a full six-year accreditation from WASC (Western Association of Schools and Colleges.)
Even as its annual budget now exceeds $3 million – the lion’s share of which is allocated for full and partial scholarships – the Cheder’s administration is as determined as ever to see to it that every dollar of the school’s budget is covered in a responsible manner and utilized to maximum impact for the chinuch of its students.
The success of this Charidy matching-funds drive will go a long way toward facilitating that reality – even as Cheder Menachem reaches for yet greater heights in nurturing the proud, G-d-fearing and knowledgeable future torch-bearers of Chabad, as inspired by the school’s namesake, the Lubavitcher Rebbe.
To make your vital and timely 4×1 donation to Cheder Menachem, please click here.