AMOS & CELIA HEILICHER MINNEAPOLIS JEWISH DAY SCHOOL

Heilicher's Offerings and Demand Grow

Heilicher's Offerings and Demand Grow

Middle school students have a small-group discussion during Musar.

By Dr. Dan Ahlstrom

If you ask ChatGPT “What is FOMO?” the response you’ll get is something like, “The fear of missing out. Refers to the feeling or perception that others are having more fun, living better lives, or experiencing better things than you are.”

Families who don’t have kids enrolled at Heilicher really are missing out!

While the new year is only a few weeks old, classes for the fall of 2024 are already filling up. We anticipate having wait pools, with many classes already close to capacity. Inquiries from prospective families have doubled since this time last year, and tours are up 75% from a year ago. We are already seeing some classes at — or almost at — capacity for next fall, with both kindergarten and third grade classes full (with waiting lists) and limited spaces available in second, fifth, and seventh grades.

What is driving this demand for Heilicher?

Coming out of COVID, Heilicher redoubled its efforts to offer a robust variety of activities to students that complements our rich selection of educational offerings. Our after-school activities and sports programs are thriving. Students can select from one of three basketball teams, chess club, arts programming, ultimate frisbee, choir, and soccer — to name just a few of the activities drawing strong participation.

We are also thrilled to introduce Musar, a Jewish character development program. Musar appeals to our community because of its focus on virtues like humility and kindness. It is inclusive, respects diverse beliefs, and engages with contemporary and ancient texts. Musar helps our middle school in building a strong, united community while empowering our students with lifelong Jewish values.

The rich menu of offerings is appealing to parents. One new parent shared that initially they were “on the fence” about coming to Heilicher. But they soon felt fully confident in their decision to come. “Not only is the community here warm and welcoming, we’ve also been really impressed with the academic rigor of Heilicher — both general studies and Judaic studies.”

The new programming is complemented by a renewed parent-teacher organization that has built a healthy volunteer component. The visibility and participation by parents in everything from our all-school lunch on Wednesdays to chaperoning field trips has invigorated our community.

Here’s an easy way to support Heilicher: Tell others about our school! The best advertisement for Heilicher is our own families, so I invite you to reach out to friends or family with school-age children and encourage them to check out our website, schedule a tour, or contact our admissions team. Every referral that is made by a current Heilicher community member will be entered into a drawing for Heilicher swag and a gift card.

So, if you know a parent considering school options for next fall, advise them to run — not walk — to Heilicher to learn more about our school. Simply contact Deborah Getsug, director of admissions, at dgetsug@hmjds.org or 952.381.3523, and she will arrange an in-person tour or coffee visit.

 

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