Throughout her years as a teacher in Bais Rivka in Crown Heights, Morah Yehudis Baitz OBM dedicated her time and energy to her students and fellow staff members.
Her warm smile expressed her care for each one of them. Until her passing at the age of 65 in 5780, Morah Baitz spared no effort to help other teachers, and frequently gifted them with treats to express her gratitude and appreciation for them.
While sitting Shiva after her untimely passing, her daughter, a second-grade teacher at Bais Rivka, and her friends decided to do something special in memory of her mother who embodied the trait of Hakaras Hatov. They would treat the teachers, just as Morah Baitz had.
A few weeks later, during the school closure (due to the pandemic,) the first initiative came about. It was just before Shavuos. Cheesecakes and chocolates, which were generously sponsored by family and friends, were packaged and hand-delivered to each Primary Staff member to enhance their Shavuos.
With the new school year approaching, an appreciation event was arranged for the teachers of Bais Rivka. At the opening session, every teacher, grades Pre-1A – 8, was entered into raffles to win gifts from local vendors. What a tremendous event it was.
It began with one contribution – a pair of earrings from Tzfasman Jewelers – and transformed into multitudes of donations from the many who remembered Morah Yehudis Baitz A”h.
Store owners were excited to be giving to this cause, and shared their memories of her; she was always pleasant and friendly, with a kind word to share. In addition to the raffles, each teacher was gifted a mug and a treat in celebration of the Shlichus that she does. “Teaching is a work of heart,” the mug read. How appropriate, for this was something Morah Baitz exemplified.
At the start of the school year, as teachers faced the myriad of challenges that this school year brought on, the Teacher Appreciation event and the legacy of Morah Baitz encouraged the teachers, many of whom expressed how thoughtful it was, and that invigorated them.
“You’re still gifting me with your unconditional love. You’re still gifting us all,” one teacher wrote, in an emotional letter to Morah Yehudis Baitz, a”h. “And all of us who have been touched by your vivacious spirit – our hearts are still thumping with the joie de vivre we saw in you every day.”
Today, Monday, Ches Cheshvan, is Morah Yehudis’s birthday, and in her honor, friends and family have generously sponsored a lunch that will be served for the staff in the Primary Division in which she most recently worked.
“This event is the first of many to come,” her children said. “Our goal is to have a teachers appreciation event for the primary department every Rosh Chodesh in her memory.”
May the pure Neshama of Yehudis Chava bas Yaakov Dov have the ultimate aliyah, and may we reunite with Moshiach now!
If you would like to sponsor upcoming Teacher Appreciation Gifts/Treats for a Rosh Chodesh/Yom Tov you can do so by emailing [email protected] Checks can be written out to Beth Rivkah (memo: in memory of Yehudis Baitz A”h) and mailed to Baitz Family at 642 Empire Blvd Brooklyn, NY 11213. Cash App: $Morahsari
Sponsors of the Teacher’s Appreciation Event
Wigs by Itta
Everything But the Baby
Boeuf and Bun
Wigs by Lilly
See View Optical
Kettle and Kord