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June 5, 2009     Heritage Florida Jewish News
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June 5, 2009

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HERITAGE FLORIDA JEWISH NEWS, JUNE 5, 2009 pAGI= ~.~ Donate $5 to wear jeans on Friday? Why not? That was the response of the staff at the law offices of Broussard. Cullen & De- Gailler, major contributors to this year's Feinstein Chal- lenge. This annual event. which occurred in March and April, proved to be a most suc- cessful event for J FS. The food drive raised 20,065 pounds of food and $22.386 in cash and grocery gift cards for the Pearlman Food Pantry. The numbers represented a 60 percent increase in donations from 2008. Even though the cam- paign yielded a bounty for the pantry, the shelves were just as quickly depleted. By mid-May, the donations had been distributed to the nu- merous families qualifying for assistance. "Hunger is prevalent right in our backyard," said Es Co- hen. director of development. "A major concern right now is that the school year is coming to an end. Those families who were on subsidized breakfast and lunch programs will now be stretched and stressed to their limits. It's a sad situa- tion. but thankfully JFS does everythingwithin its capacity to help.'" To help with the food drive, bins and coin collection cans were distributed throughout central Florida. as more than 50 organizations agreed to partner with JFS for the campaign. Adrienne Cooperman, emergency ser- vices coordinator at JFS, said, "Considering the economic Hebrew Day School fourth grade students enjoy creative by their innovative teachers• The Hebrew Day School recently released the results of 2008 standardized test scores for its elementary and middle school. The school is ranked in the top tier in Central Florida as well as the nation. Stanford Achievement Tests com- pared the school to both public and privateschools nationally. The overall results for grades 2-8 are that the student's average scores are in the 85 percentile and their grade equivalent is an average of three grade levels above, Lynne Shefsky, head of school, said she was thrilled with the results. "With this sampling of their academic performance, our students have shown the exceptional strength of an HDS educa- tion. Through a differentiated learning approach we offer each student the opportunity to meet or exceed their own potential to achieve academic goals," said Shefsky. Karen Moreno, mother of three HDS students and president of the board, said, "I love how much my children are learning, not only aca- demically but also about their Judaism. We are so fortunate to have such an excellent community day school here in Central Florida. HDS teaches the whole child and provides the tools to create indepen- dent thinkers and laying the foundation for our children to become successful adults." Mishkan T'filah. a new sid- dur of the Reform movement. set out to create a prayer book that would help re-engage Jews in meaningful worship by offering a balance of cre- ativity and beauty, theology and purpose. The book will be presented to members and guests of Congregation Bet Chaim by Dr. Ken Hanson in his unique multimedia approach. Hanson. a teacher, writer. lecturer, researcher, perform- er. leader of trips to Israel and a member of Congregation Bet Chaim. is preparing to lead the congregation in a series of services commencing Friday, June 12. and continuing on July 10 and Aug. 14 at 8 p.m. at the Casselberry synagogue. Announcements of additional dates will follow for the fall, as Hanson is scheduled to lead Shabbat services on a monthly basis. He is a scholar of Hebrew language and literature, the history of biblical lands, and Jewish and early Christian culture. He teaches Judaic Studies at the University of Central Florida. "It has always been my desire to mix effective communication with scholar- ship," says Hanson, who has appeared on syndicated radio and national television, in- cluding the History Channel. Students who have taken his classes over he last 13 years are used to his "over-the-top" style and say they can always count on him for a new and unique learning experience. CBC is looking forward to the same exhilarating encounter. according to temple officials. The public is welcome to attend Congregation Bet climate, the response from the community was incred- ible. We are thankful to all of our friends and businesses who participated in our fight against hunger." "Hunger doesn't take a va- cation." Cohen said. remind- ing people that JFS accepts donations of non-perishable goods, cash and supermar- ket gift cards throughout the year. If you would like to learn more about donating to the Pearlman Food Pantry, find out about other JFS services and programs or would like to volunteer on a special project, contact Jewish Family Services at407-644-7593. JFS is a constituent agency of the Jewish Federation of Greater Orlando and the Heart of Florida United Way. approaches to learning provided The school maintains a low- student teacher ratio in class- rooms offering more individu- alized attention throughout the day. The Apple-based technology program is state- of-the-art with one desktop computer per two students in the kindergarten department through second grade and a one-to-one laptop program for third through eighth grade students. The Hebrew Day School still has limited spaces available for the upcoming 2009-2010 school year. For more infor- mation or to arrange a private tour, contact Susan Cohen, director of admissions, at 407- 647-0713, or visit the school's website at Chaim's spiritualjourneywith Hanson as the congregation explores the new Reform prayer book. Shabbat services will be projected on a large screen as the pages of prayer come alive with visual effects in true Hanson style. Plus. as an added bonus, there will be a Torah reading from his Holocaust Torah. Author of"Dead Sea Scrolls: The Untold Story," Hanson's publications also include "Secrets From the Lost Bible," "Words of Light: Spiritual Wisdom From the Dead Sea Scmlls"and"Kabbalah: Three Thousand Years of Mystic Tradition." Congregation Bet Chaim is at 426 Lake Port Cove in Cas- selberry. For more informa- tion: 407-830 -72 !1 or contact Meril Salzburg at: treasurer@ Jessica (1), Marcela and Emily help design food collection boxes. 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