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Private Jewish schools in Baltimore to close

Two private Jewish schools in Baltimore will close at the end of the school year after plans for a new, combined school failed to get off the ground.

Boards of the Day School at Baltimore Hebrew, a kindergarten through eighth grade school, and The Shoshana S. Cardin School, a high school, had planned to combine the students in a new K-12 school called the Independent Jewish Academy of Baltimore in the fall. The two schools are located close to each other and near the Baltimore County line.

Gerri Chizeck, head of the Day School, said the decision to close the schools and abandon plans for the Independent Jewish Academy came after struggles with enrollment and finances.

"We're working very hard with private and public schools, and certainly Jewish schools, to help them with placements of students and teachers," Chizeck said. "That's our first priority."

The Day School has an enrollment of about 50, Chizeck said, while Cardin has a similar number of students. Parents were notified this week.

Chizeck said many private schools have had a hard time amid the recession of the past few years, as some students cannot afford the tuition and many others require financial aid.

"We have a wonderful school and it served many students over the years," she said. "Those students are now doing great things in the community and they've left a great legacy."

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