Hillel Community Day School hosted a ribbon-cutting event Oct. 26 to showcase more than $650,000 in school upgrades and renovations for five new learning spaces.
Local dignitaries included Sen. Joseph E. Robach, R-Greece, and Brighton Town Supervisor William W. Moehle. One of the featured areas, The Louis S. & Molly B. Wolk STEAM Lab, was dedicated by Mr. Marvin Wolk from the family foundation.
The new Science, Technology, Engineering, Art and Math Lab incorporates curriculum focused on working in small groups around a variety of topics. It is a fully integrated learning environment where everything from furniture and technology to curriculum and assessment work together to support hands-on, minds-on learning. The children come together for personal and collaborative learning during their weekly classes and additional integrated and immersive projects.
These upgrades bring Hillel Community Day School to the top of the competitive private school Rochester market, said Board President Yosef Kilimnick. No other school in the area offers the Creative Learning Systems Smartlab experience.
The new Library & Media Center includes the school’s first broadcast studio. This studio gives the students access to professional grade equipment to create broadcast news productions as well as multi-media projects for their classes. Students are able to host in front of a green screen and modify in the producer’s room to create virtual news desks and backgrounds.
The new Science & Sustainability Lab includes two vertical hydroponic tower gardens along with a third horizontal unit connected to an Aquaponics tank. The focus of this new space is sustainability and ecological innovations as seen through a Jewish lens. Most of these technologies were created in Israel and provide another dialog between Hillel students and their friends from partner school, Moaz HaMaccabim, in Modi’in, Israel.
“Our world is changing at a rapid pace with new technologies, changes to the environment, and an increase in the world population,” said Head of School Tracie Glazer. “At Hillel Community Day School, we are preparing our students to be at the forefront of innovation and sustainability from an ecological, sociological, and economical perspective. They are learning how to sustain the future of the Jewish peoplehood, as well as how to sustain the environment and themselves.”
The new Art & Ceramic Studio includes a new kiln for the students to incorporate ceramics into their curriculum. The room features colorful tables and various media for student’s personal artistic expression. Art is held twice a week and projects incorporate multiple academic subjects through immersive cross-curricular themes.
These upgrades and renovations were made possible by matching grants from a Jewish foundation and then matched by The Louis S. and Molly B. Wolk Foundation, Sidney and Barbara Sobel, Cornell/Weinstein Family Foundation, Eli and Peggy Futerman, Ron and Marilyn Furman, Mona Friedman Kolko Family Fund, Naomi Silver, Mermelstein/Karen Latavia Fund, Susan and Maurice Zauderer, The Ames Amzalak Memorial Trust and the Judith Lasker Kaufman Fund. Additional naming opportunities are available for those interested in supporting this distinguished school.
Private tours are available by emailing jhiller@hillelschool.org or calling (585) 271-6877. Visit hillelschool.org for more information.