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Reinstate CHAP at Miami Public Schools

Addressed to: Madam Chair, Honorable Members of the board & Distinguished Superintendent

Since 2008, Chabad Chayil has been caring for the children of Miami Dade County, during after school hours, through the highly acclaimed Community Hebrew After School Program, affectionately known as CHAP.

While everyone knows how difficult child care is, especially after the regular school hours, CHAP has a top rating by every accrediting agency and a five star rating by the community. (Just google Chabad Chayil ratings). There was never any areas of concern with any staff member or child at CHAP.

A single business day before the 2019-20 school year began, Chabad Chayil was abruptly notified that it can not use MDCPS facilities, as it has for more than a decade, because of an open investigation, brought about by an anonymous complaint, that a religious organization was operating inside public schools. Chabad ChayilWe carefully read the libelous and defamatory investigative draft report and answered each of its concerns (see ChabadChayil.org/Crisis). 

We plead before you to reopen CHAP, that over 200 children were registered to start at the opening of this school year. And hundreds more were attending (CTeen, CKids, GROW etc) on a weekly basis. 

CHAP pledged early on, way before any report was issued or there was even any investigation, to do whatever was necessary to move forward in a fair and satisfactory way, that will fulfill all and any requirements that MDCPS may have.

Each day that passes, is detrimental to the children who are missing the enrichment that Chabad Chayil offers at CHAP. To the parents who are relying on CHAP to work a full day. And to the teachers and staff who are in limbo.

While there are other faith based programs operating on public school grounds after school, Chabad Chayil has been providing the ONLY after school program that teaches Hebrew language and addresses Jewish culture. Many of the children CHAP services have special needs and have no other afterschool alternative to care for these needs. 

We would like to thank the members of MDCPS school board for enabling us to provide a program with the highest standard of care. We never dreamed 11 years ago that our program servicing 7 students would grow to help over 500 students on a weekly basis, and parents would choose AWK8 and VABHOE as their school of choice, just to attend the Chabad program.

We also never dreamed that after 11 years of tremendously hard work to provide this high level of care, that came at no cost to MDCPS, it would suddenly be disrupted the day before school began.

As the clock is ticking, we are humbly asking that we work together to reopen this program as quickly as possible. 

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