The school day starts at 8:30 am for all students and finishes at varying times based on the grade.
The detailed information is as follows:
Monday – Thursday
Does the school offer before and after school care and after school programs?
Yes. For an additional cost, our Kids’ Club is available from 7:45 to 8:30 am and from 3:45 to 5:30 pm on regular school days and varies during holidays and early Shabbat dismissal. We also offer a variety of afterschool programs involving the arts, sports, computers, and environmental studies.
Does the school offer bus service?
Yes. Starting with the 2023-2024 school year, we have a large yellow school bus servicing the school with four depot stops to the south. Our southernmost stop is at Davenport Road and Christie Street with other stops at Rushton Road and Vaughan Road, Roselawn and Marlee, and southwest of Bathurst and Glencairn. Bussing fees are $150 per month for two-way service.
What is the school’s kashrut policy?
The school abides by the laws of kashrut. All school functions are strictly kosher. Food brought to school for school-related events must be dairy-based or pareve and catered by or purchased from a business with recognized kashrut agency supervision. Lunches brought to school must be pareve or dairy. In order that all children feel comfortable at all times, we respectfully request that parents be sensitive to dietary needs and kashrut at private celebrations such as birthday parties.
Does the school have an allergy policy?
The Toronto Heschel School aims to provide a safe environment for all of its students. The school is committed to the fundamental Jewish value of pikuach nefesh, which is the principle that the saving of a life at stake prevails over all other interests. Following that guiding principle, the school has adopted “Life Threatening Food Allergies: Risk Minimization and Management Policy” to support its efforts to minimize the risk to its students who have life-threatening food allergies.
The Toronto Heschel School has a NO NUTS policy. All foods that contain nuts/peanuts products (or their bi-products) are strictly prohibited on school property at any time. This includes foods with warning labels such as ‘may contain traces of nuts/peanuts’ or ‘has been produced using equipment that comes in contact with nuts/peanuts’, or a similar phrase.
Other food allergies in a class will be communicated to class parents and responsible efforts made to keep allergic children safe from named allergens. Students with prescribed EpiPens must carry at least one EpiPen at all times, while a second EpiPen must be left with the school office.
Why should we send our child to Heschel?
Parents want to give their children the best possible learning environment to begin their formal education, which is what our school offers. Our students benefit from outstanding teachers, and an award-winning integrated curriculum that is attentive to students’ individual needs. We integrate our subjects into thematic units; as a result, our students develop a comprehensive understanding of the world around them, and cultivate the skills needed to thrive in diverse environments. In addition, our educational approach and school culture appreciate and affirm differences in Jewish philosophy, and value the range of religious practices among students.
Is The Toronto Heschel School affiliated with any synagogues or movements?
The Toronto Heschel School is not affiliated with any synagogue or movement. Since being founded in 1996, The Toronto Heschel School has always been inclusive of all Jewish backgrounds and practices. The School provides a curriculum and school environment that benefits children from the entire Jewish community. The school respects each family’s choices regarding religious observance in the home.
Are all teachers at The Toronto Heschel School certified?
Our teachers are either certified teachers who are graduates from a Canadian University or equivalent, or their credentials are evaluated and confirmed by the Centre for Jewish Education. The Teacher Excellence Fund provides professional development opportunities and ensures that our teachers continue to grow as lifelong learners.
How does the school teach Hebrew?
We teach Hebrew as an immersive second language learning experience. Preschoolers dip their toes into daily Hebrew exposure, while kindergarten is a bilingual classroom, with two teachers at all times–one speaking Hebrew and one speaking English. In later grades, Hebrew weaves through the day with language fluency and literacy as core goals. Our elementary students converse comfortably in Hebrew; Junior High students learn Judaic text and history, write essays, poetry, scripts, and screenplays–in Hebrew–and graduate with a high level of Hebrew competency.
What does integrated Jewish education mean?
Integration means that curriculum units are anchored by Generative Topics–“Big Ideas” that coordinate learning using an interdisciplinary approach for a more consolidated and deeper understanding than what is traditionally obtained through studying separate subjects. Course materials interweave Jewish and general studies, clarifying students’ complex Canadian-Jewish perspective.
What do we mean by environmental education?
Science and the wonder of nature run throughout the curriculum in many ways. The school sits on a large green field with outdoor classrooms, a teaching garden, and natural playground. We are recognized by EcoSchools Canada for our educational strategies and programs in ecology and care for the planet; we are the only Jewish Day School in Ontario to attain Platinum status, which is the highest level of EcoSchool achievement.