Our School

What began as a group of Kindergarten students in one room of the former Oakland/Piedmont Jewish Community Center in 1991, has today become an established and respected part of the East Bay Jewish educational landscape.

In 1994, OHDS opened its campus on Ridgeway Avenue in Oakland with a Kindergarten, first grade and a combined second and third grade. The community responded positively to this new choice in Jewish education through steadily increasing enrollment figures.

In the winter of 1997, the curriculum expanded to include a thriving middle school and by 1998 our Ridgeway Avenue location was “bursting at the seams”. Our only choice was to acquire a new location large enough to accommodate our current and future growth. Thanks to the generosity of our community, our new Redwood Road campus opened in September 2003.

In June 2001, OHDS proudly celebrated its first graduating class of eighth grade students. These students, and the ones who followed, have enjoyed the benefits of a substantial grant awarded to OHDS from the prestigious Partnership for Excellence in Jewish Education, one of eight schools from the United States and Canada to receive such an honor in the first grant-giving cycle for this organization.

Today, students travel from near and far from different communities in the Bay Area to come to OHDS to enjoy a truly outstanding education in a nurturing and safe environment.

“My family and I continue to take great pride in the accomplishments of OHDS. The most endearing one being the strong and sustaining education that our daughters received, including their love for reading, learning, word inquiry, and social justice. OHDS also provided our children with a seamless merger of Jewish and general studies in a positive and challenging academic environment. I believe that being a part of OHDS was one of the greatest opportunities of my rabbinic career.”

– Rabbi Howard Zack, parent of three OHDS former students and OHDS Founding Board member

What People Say

  • The essence of the education OHDS provides is brilliantly reflected in the character and values of its students and graduates. I can't imagine a better foundation from which to grow and succeed.

    Rochelle Shapell, Parent of two OHDS graduates and OHDS Founding Board Member

  • The OHDS dream unfolds daily through the lives of the school's students and teachers. Every moment at the school is an opportunity to connect, learn, and grow.

    Rabbi Yonatan Cohen, OHDS parent and Spiritual leader of Congregation Beth Israel

  • OHDS has become more than a school, it’s our community and neighborhood. The focus on educating the whole child carries over to an investment in the health and welfare of each child, family and staff member.

    Catherine Shachat, OHDS alumni parent and former OHDS Board of Directors President

  • I love the fact that my children begin each day with prayer, engage in deep Torah study, speak Hebrew like an Israeli, and receive an excellent secular education. We appreciate how OHDS embraces every child.

    Elissa Kittner, OHDS parent and President of the Board

  • More than just a school, OHDS is a family, where each student is seen as our crown jewel - each cultivating a personal, passionate and serious Jewish identity and a commitment to join the Jewish journey as life long learners.

    Rabbi Yonatan Cohen, OHDS parent and Spiritual leader of Congregation Beth Israel

  • Our children are learning their Judaism from the ground up. There is no ambivalence.

    Judy Chun, OHDS Parent

  • OHDS has already given my children a strong sense of themselves as Jews living Jewish lives. This is no small thing in the modern world.

    Jodi Tharan, former OHDS Parent

  • OHDS students are constantly exposed to the new ways of approaching a variety of subject matters. They are encouraged to think critically and really explore and understand the material that they are learning and the world around them.

    Leslie Edelman, Past President and current Board Member, OHDS parent

  • It's not just about love of Israel and learning Hebrew. Our Kindergartner now sings "G-d bless America" with the same enthusiasm as she does songs about "Apples and Honey" and is recognizing letters and words in both languages.

    Dan Cohen, Former President of the Board of Directors and parent of two OHDS students

  • OHDS is more than a school and more than a community to me. It is really a family. The teachers are so loving and caring. They want each child to succeed with a deep thought of benefiting the whole Jewish community.

    Adi Yaron Schaker, former OHDS Parent

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