A Reform cheder has received top marks from an educational charity that validates out-of-school settings.
Finchley Reform Synagogue not only received a quality mark from the National Resource Centre for Supplementary Education but was graded as “advanced” in all eight categories.
FRS’s Rabbi Miriam Berger said it was one of the first two institutions to receive the highest score.
NRCSE assesses the management and safeguarding of part-time settings, which are not inspected by Ofsted.
FRS education director Karen Bloom said, “This award encompasses the entire education programme — Kochavim, our Sunday morning programme for those in reception to year five, our bnei mitzvah programme for those in years six, seven and eight, and our activities for our post-bnei mitzvah youth.”
It followed her attendance at a three-day NRCSE management course, a visit to Finchley from the centre and presentations made by her and Hebrew co-ordinator Ravid Kochavi.
“We already had a strong programme, but there were, inevitably, areas where we saw ways to improve,” she said.
Rabbi Berger said she was “so pleased that such a regulatory body now exists for supplementary school education”.
The cheder’s move a few years ago to “a model of education on a Sunday morning which enables the children to choose their mode of learning through which we weave the Jewish studies curriculum has made a real difference to the children’s attitude to being there,” she said.
“Particular favourites have included teaching festival rituals through coding, Jewish history through cooking and liturgy through band.”