50 Years

A Timeline of Rodeph Sholom School


Congregation Rodeph Sholom (CRS) is founded. It is one of the oldest and largest Reform synagogues in New York City. 


Religious school is founded when CRS moves to West 83rd Street.


Schnurmacher Nursery School is founded by Rabbi Louis I. Newman and Cantor Gunter Hirschberg. RSS was Newman and Hirschberg’s vision, but it was “a donation of $5 to pay for a baby sitter and coffee and cake” in 1958 that allowed a small group of young mothers to make a case for the creation of a nursery school. Classes are held at 7 West 83rd Street (Congregation Rodeph Sholom) for the first time


The first class has only 13 students, all nursery age.


The Gunter Hirschberg Elementary School is created and Rodeph Sholom Day School is founded. Rodeph Sholom School is the first full time Jewish Day School in North America sponsored by a Reform congregation. The building at 10 West 84th Street is purchased.


Students in Kindergarten through 6th Grade begin classes at 10 West 84th Street.


The Jewish Reform Movement endorses the creation of Reform Jewish day schools for Jewish students; Rodeph Sholom School has been already in existence for 15 years. 


Students expand into the newly renovated 168 West 79th Street


With over 300 students and 45 teachers and administrators, RSS continues to grow. Rodeph Sholom School now contains 3 divisions, Nursery (2s and 3s), Bridge (Pre-K, K, and 1st) and Elementary (2nd-6th).


The 78th Street portion of the 79th Street building opens additional classrooms and the Taitz Auditorium is created.


The Middle School Division is founded; Class of 2001 is last 6th Grade graduating class. The Bridge division is renamed Lower Elementary Division.


First graduating 8th Grade Class.


Lower Elementary and Upper Elementary merge to become the Elementary Division. 


Renovation of 78th/79th Street buildings is completed to include new gym and expanded classroom space.


The 84th Street renovation is completed including a new facade, lobby and updated classroom spaces.