It’s not often that someone receives a 55,000-square-foot building as a gift. But that’s exactly what happened to Chabad of Park Heights and its school, Cheder Chabad of Baltimore, Chabad.org reports.
Eight years ago, the school was just the brainchild of a handful of parents in the community who wanted to bring a Chabad chinuch to their children.
It started with 10 preschoolers in the basement of one of the parents’ homes. The school originally catered to the children of Chabad rabbis who lived in the area and Chabad families that had moved to Baltimore.
As the school continued to grow to 40 children, it moved to a small house near the Shul, only to again outgrow the space a few years later.
Then, the school’s administrator received a phone call from someone not affiliated with Chabad, telling him about a synagogue in the community that wasn’t being used anymore, and which could be an option for Chabad and its school, wrote Chabad.org.
The owner, Dr. Paul Volosov, who is President of Salisbury Behavioral Health, was apparently “looking to do something positive with the building.”
Volosov first invited the school to move in rent-free, renovating some of the rooms as well. With the abundant new space, enrollment jumped from 40 to 80 kids in one year.
Then one morning about a year ago, Volosov called, telling school that he wanted to donate the building to them.
Today, the school caters to a mix of children, both Chabad and non-Chabad, with five grades for boys and two grades for girls, plus preschool, for a total of about 170 children.