San Diego City Schools voted unanimously Tuesday night to approve a charter for Kavod, a Hebrew charter school slated to open in September.
Modeled on Brooklyn’s Hebrew Language Academy Charter School (HLA), the publicly funded San Diego school will launch with 210 students in grades K-2 and plans to add a grade each year until it goes through fifth grade.
Kavod, Hebrew for “respect,” will be the first Hebrew charter school in San Diego and the second in California. It is the third school to be launched with backing from the New York-based Hebrew Charter School Center. The center supports HLA in Brooklyn and Hatikvah International Academy Charter School in East Brunswick, N.J., along with school-planning groups in Manhattan, Minneapolis and Washington, D.C.
There are currently seven Hebrew charter schools in the United States collectively enrolling approximately 2,000 children. The Ben Gamla Hebrew Charter School Foundation, which launched the first Hebrew charter school in 2007, operates four schools in Florida and will open a fifth in August.
Hebrew charter schools, which are open to all students regardless of religious background, teach Hebrew and Israeli culture; they are prohibited from teaching or promoting religion.