School Life FAQ
Is there a school entrance exam?
No. The CJA is an inclusive enviroment and no testing is required.
Can I attend the school if I am not Jewish?
Yes. The CJA is open to everyone. The CJA offers a very robust Alberta curriculum and graduates students with a high level of skills. Because a proportion of time is spent on the Judaic studies, students are taught time-management skills and learn to efficiently use resources in order to succeed in the Alberta curriculum.
Is there a school uniform?
Yes. In 2011-2012 the CJA implemented a policy surrounding appropriate attire, to support the development of school pride, spirit and to instill a sense of community. In general, Monday through Thursday students wear the regular uniform. On Friday and Jewish holidays, students wear a formal uniform.
Effective July 2nd, 2016, our new school uniform provider will be InSchoolwear (ISW). As we transition to our new uniform supplier, students will be permitted to wear Top Marks uniform clothing throughout the 2016-2017 school year. All fittings (no appointment necessary) and orders for uniforms can be made at the InSchoolwear located in Philips Park at:
Building A, Unit A9E6120 -2nd Street SE
Students are required to have indoor and outdoor shoes. Weather-appropriate clothing is also necessary as students will participate in outdoor activities until -20 degrees. Non-uniform days are scheduled twice per month and often follow a theme. To see all uniform and non-uniform school days please refer to the CJA Google Calendar icon located on the website home page.
What are the school holidays and term dates?
The CJA calendar celebrates Jewish holidays and secular bank days. The 2016/17 school year commences on September 1, 2016 and ends on June 28, 2017 (Nursery -Grade 6), and June 30, 2017 (Grade 7-9).
Are your holidays in line with the Calgary Board of Education (CBE)?
Our holidays do not always coincide with the CBE as they follow the Jewish holidays. We do follow all statuatory holidays and winter break.
Is there a cafeteria?
We do not have a school cafeteria, however we do have a hot lunch program on Fridays in which CJA students are required to sign up and pay for in advance. The school also has a kosher kitchen. The kitchen is used for school celebrations, such as the Hanukkah Latke Lunch, the Passover Seder and the Yom Ha'Atzmaut Falafel Lunch.
Is the school a kosher facility?
While the kitchen on campus is kosher, children are not required to bring kosher food in their personal lunches. We do ask that kosher-style lunches and snacks are provided (no pork, seafood or mixing of milk and meat).
Is there an after-school club?
After school clubs at the CJA change annually. Junior High sports teams practices and games are scheduled after school hours.
Where do I drop off and pick up?
ECS (Nursery through Kindergarten) children can be dropped off and picked up in the front of the school. Nursery and Junior Kindergarten children can be walked to their classroom and assisted with the morning routine (changing shoes, hanging up jackets). After the first month of school, children in Kindergarten are expected to walk to their class alone. At pick up, parents are expected to stay in the mud room until the bell rings.
Children in Grades 1 through 9 should be dropped-off and picked-up at the rear of the school in the parking lot shared with the Beth Tzedek synagogue. Children in grades 1-6 should enter through the south door, children in grades 7-9 should enter through the north door. These children are expected to walk themselves to class in the morning and can meet their parents in the mud room or outside of the doors at pick-up.
Parents are welcome to stay for the singing of the Israeli and Canadian national anthem.
Is there transport or a bus system?
There currently is no busing system available. If carpooling services are required, please contact the school for a list of interested families.
Is there a school supply list?
Yes - this is provided to parents towards the last month of each school year.
Can I volunteer?
YES! Volunteers are always welcome and are necessary for the celebrations and excursions that the school offers. We also encourage grandparents to spend time in the classrooms and helping pull events together. If you would like to volunteer please contact Christine Laidlaw at (403) 253-3992 for a list of opportunities throughout the school year. Many volunteer hours can be done in the evenings, outside of normal school/work hours. Please check with your child's teacher about volunteering in the classroom. Volunteering in your child's classroom does not count towards your annual volunteer hours unless it is in conjunction with a specific program. Click here for additional volunteer opportunities available through the CJA Parents' Association.
Do you follow the Alberta curriculum as well as providing substantial Judaic studies?
Yes. The Calgary Jewish Academy offers more hours of instruction than required by Alberta Education, in part to accommodate the dual curriculum. Our students have shown exceptional abilities in managing this expectation as demonstrated in the Fraser Institute Report Card.
Are there many opportunities for field trips/excursions/camps?
Yes. Each year our students participate in field trips which provide a deeper understanding of the current curriculum as an example Junior Kindergarten students may visit a fire station as part of their community leaders unit. Students in Grade 8 to go to Washington to visit the Holocaust Museum and in Grade 9 student’s travel to Israel for three weeks. Please see the Trips Page for more details.