A Farewell Message

A look back from Rochelle Baron, Director of the CBI Preschool:


Dear B’nai Israel Family:

My involvement with the preschool began in the late 70’s when we enrolled our daughter in the Twos class. Fast forward to 1994 as I sat with Rabbi Bayar, Naomi Eisenberger, and a committee of wonderful people who hired me to be the next director. And now, 26 years later, I am retiring from this special place!

So many events have transpired over this time period! I met wonderful families and witnessed many, many children pass through our school and move on to great adventures. The list of colleges our graduates have attended and the successes they have achieved is truly mind-boggling. I had the blessing of having two grandchildren attend and call out “Hi Grandma!” whenever we would see each other. I have lived through two renovation projects, one emergency evacuation (when the gas station on Vauxhall Road exploded), and holding school in trailers in the parking lot. Throughout this time I have worked with talented and committed teachers who challenged their students and brought many great experiences to their classrooms. As a staff we went through a wide range of life’s experiences, some good and some not so good, and we were always there for each other. The many past CBI presidents, pre-school committee members, executive directors, and maintenance staff are all responsible for helping to make my tenure at the preschool the rewarding experience it has been.

I learned a lot from my years as an early childhood educator. One given fact is that no two days are alike—you never know what you are in for until you see the faces of the students in the morning. I know that children need love, lots of patience, and must be allowed to discover things for themselves. They need to have opportunities to play, make mistakes, and find solutions. Most of all they must be taken seriously and respected by the adults in charge of helping them grow up to be responsible future members of society.

I leave knowing we have created a warm, nurturing environment which is well respected in our community. The school’s focus on learning Jewish values and age-appropriate early childhood curriculum will hopefully continue in the years to come.

Thank you to Rabbi Bayar for his years of guidance, sense of humor, and support. Many thanks to our current CBI team: Cantor Wallach for being my Shabbat morning partner and friend, Rabbi Resnick for his presence and wisdom this year, Rabbi Julie for her commitment to making our two schools work so well together, Mariela Dybner for her leadership, Susan Kashan for her administrative help, and to Harvey Brenner for holding everything together. I wish Rabbi Isenberg and Gila many years of fulfillment and joy as they join this very special congregational family. And best wishes to Rabbi Julie for much success as she becomes the third director of CBI Preschool!

Most important of all, I send much love to Gary, Rhea and Michael, Joshua and Jennifer, Sam, Lucas, and Oliver who make my life meaningful every single day.