These words, joyfully sung by your children while they swayed in unison during our first all-school assembly, marked the beginning of our new school year at JCDSRI. The words aptly expressed how grateful we were to be together, old and new friends alike, celebrating the opportunity to be a part of this unique community.
Believe it or not, this year marks the 40th anniversary of this special school. For the Jewish people the number 40 represents transition and change – an opportunity for reflection and renewal. In the story of Noah, the rain poured for 40 days, submerging the earth before the promise of rebirth; the Israelites arrived at Mt. Sinai as a nation of Egyptian slaves but were transformed after Moses descended from Mt. Sinai after 40 days; and there are 40 days between the first day of the Jewish month of Elul, when we begin to blow the shofar to prepare for Rosh Hashanah, until Yom Kippur, the end of the annual teshuva (repentance) period.
Certainly this school has encountered significant transition and renewal during its 40 years. Hundreds of children have walked through the very same hallways in this building over the last four decades, including this year when we welcomed eight students whose parents are alumni. I am humbled to be part of an institution that has nurtured so many and has contributed so much over the last 40 years. The Rhode Island Jewish community has sustained this school for four decades, a commitment worthy of great celebration. Our school‘s roots have continued to strengthen, allowing for new and vibrant growth every year. I am thankful to our exceptional faculty, staff, students – and especially all of you – whom engage in sacred work and enable us to move from strength to strength. Thank you for trusting us.
May this new year be filled with hope for our future, an appreciation for our past, and heartfelt attention to our present.
Wishing you a Shanah Tovah Umetukah – a happy and sweet New Year.
Head of School
Head of School