History

Talmud Torah began its full day school program in 1933. It was the first of its kind in Canada. In 1975 it became part of the Edmonton Public School Board. The agreement was an early example of the EPSB's innovative approach to inclusiveness and the desire to accommodate the unique needs of different communities within the framework of a public education system.

1912, Founded by a group of 13 Jewish individuals in the basement of the Beth Israel Synagogue on 95th Street. They were immigrants who had fled the poverty and persecution of Eastern Europe to make better lives for themselves in the "New World", as merchants and business people. It was an after school religious studies program.

The Jewish community grew through the 1920s. As the school population grew, the basement of the Beth Israel Synagogue became unsuitable, and so a decision was taken in the early 1920s to build a new building for the Talmud Torah. The cornerstone was laid on Sept. 9, 1925, on a lot on 103 Street south of Jasper Avenue. The success of this new institution was the result of the vision, dedication, commitment and hard work of community members. Names like Baltzan, Cristall, Kline, Friedman, Shoctor, Dlin, Shaw, Goldberg, Lyons, Dower, Newhouse, Diamond, Estrin, Shtabsky, Bornstein, and others.

1933, A Jewish Day School Begins

The board developed a concept for a Hebrew/Jewish day school program, where the regular curriculum including English language, math, and science would be covered in an intensive half-day format, with the other half-day devoted to Hebrew language study, as well as religious study. The vision for the full day program, as explained by Ron Pascoe in his book, was to “…develop self-knowledgeable Jews…..who would play a productive role in the future of both Judaism and Canada.” It was with this kind of foresight and vision that the full day program began in 1933. It was the first of its kind in Canada, starting with Grades 1 and 2.

1953 The Next Phase

Due to increased enrollment, the community was called upon to raise the funds necessary to build a new building. The new school, located in the north Glenora neighbourhood on 106 Ave. and 133 St., opened the doors of its first wing in 1953, followed by its second wing of classrooms and offices in 1957, and its large modern gymnasium in 1963.

On January 11, 1994, the Board decided to proceed with the construction of a new building in the west end of Edmonton, and to undertake what would be the largest ever capital fundraising project in the history of the Edmonton Jewish community. The ground breaking ceremony for the new school site at 64 Avenue and 172 Street was on April 20, 1997, and the school took occupancy on November 24, 1997.