Today’s news:

Little Neck Chabad wants to open new school in fall

The Chabad of Little Neck plans to open a Hebrew school for children with special needs this fall at its center on Cullman Avenue, said Rivky Shifrin, one of the Chabad’s directors.

The site, at 254-05 Cullman Ave. in Little Neck, intends to kick off the children’s program either in September or later in the fall. The Chabad is operated by Rabbi Eli Shifrin and his wife, Rivky Shifrin.

“There are Hebrew schools in the neighborhood, but they don’t cater to special needs,” Rivky Shifrin said. “And many of these kids’ needs are in different areas. One may be ready to master Hebrew reading, but that does not mean that all children will be able to master it. We will be very hands-on. It will be fun. Kids will want to come back.”

The rabbi and his wife are emissaries in the Chabad-Lubavitch movement, a Brooklyn-based group dedicated to reviving traditional Judaism across the lines of Reform, Conservative and Orthodox affiliations.

The Chabad could possibly assign one staff member to each child, but plans for the program have not yet been finalized. The program would also include a visual and musical component, Rivky Shifrin said.

“One of our strongest beliefs is that every child deserves a bat or a bar mitzvah,” she said. “It will all be according to each child’s level.”

The program would be primarily aimed at grade and middle school-aged children.

The site is also planning to hold upcoming events for families as well as its annual high holiday services starting in September.

For more information, e-mail or call 718-221-6731.

Reach reporter Nathan Duke by e-mail at or by phone at 718-260-4566.

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