The  Jennifer Barnum Luria Early Childhood Center

The Jennifer Barnum Luria Early Childhood Center

Registration is now open for The Jennifer Barnum Luria Early Childhood Center      (The Jennie

Full-time, year-round, Reform Jewish early childhood education returns to the historic Congregation Beth Israel Campus with the Jennifer Barnum Luria Early Childhood Center (“The Jennie”), which opens on February 12, 2024!

 Scroll or click below to learn more about the enrollment process, tuition, schedule, program, staff, and more.


Enrollment at The Jennie is now open; click here to secure your child’s spot!

We are accepting registration for all age groups, and classrooms will be opened throughout 2024 as spaces are filled. The first classrooms opening in February are infants (6 weeks to 12 months), toddlers (12 – 24 months), and 2 year-olds. If you are interested in enrolling a child of a different age group, please do so. This will place them on our waiting list for when we do open that age group, and, if there is sufficient interest as February approaches, we may be able to open those rooms as soon as February! 

Once our classrooms are full, our waitlist placement will prioritize families who are members of Congregation Beth Israel, as well as those who already have a sibling enrolled at The Jennie. 

The Jennie is still under construction, meaning your child(ren) will enjoy a brand-new facility designed with their learning and exploration in mind; however, it also means that we can’t show you our school just yet. We expect to be open for tours in January, so please let us know if you are interested in one!


Tuition is set as

  • $2150 monthly for infants (six weeks to twelve months) and young toddlers (twelve to twenty-four months).
  • $1900 monthly for two year olds
  •  $1675 monthly for three, four, and five year olds 

A sibling discount of 10% of the eldest child’s tuition is available.

The Jewish Federation of Greater Portland’s Right Start Program offers scholarship support of up to $2000 for families enrolling their children in Jewish preschool; click here for details and to apply.


The Jennie will operate from 8:00 AM – 5:00 PM, Monday through Friday.

We will follow the Congregation Beth Israel calendar for closures for Federal and Jewish Holidays, and close for week-long winter and summer breaks. We are still finalizing our calendar for the coming year, but when we do, it will be posted here.

For weather-related closures or late starts, we will take our cues from Portland Public Schools: when they close, we close.

As a child-led program, your child’s day at The Jennie will largely flow in accordance with their needs. 


Early Release

October 2: Erev Rosh Hashana

Early Closure at 1:00 PM 

October 11: Kol Nidre

Early Closure at 1:00 PM 

Full Day Closures

Memorial Day: May 27th

Summer Break: July 1st – July 5th 

Parent Teacher Conferences: August 2nd 

Labor Day:  September 2nd 

Rosh Hashanah:  October 3rd

Teacher Professional Development Day October 25th

Thanksgiving: November 28th  – November  29th 

Parent Teacher Conferences: December 6th 

Winter Break: December 25th  –  January 1st 

About Our Program



At The Jennie we are guided by a child-led, and play-based, philosophy. We utilize child observation and teacher reflection in order to shape curriculum that serves our children as individuals and the class as a whole. Teachers foster secure attachments through responsive caregiving, understanding that optimal learning and growth comes only when children feel safe and secure. Children build foundational academic and life skills through play and interacting with their environment. Art and creativity is a daily practice and the children have opportunities to create their own art, and explore external creations. We strive to bring together the best practices in many developmental and educational philosophies, including the teachings of Maria Montessori, the principles of RIE – developed by Magda Gerber, and the warm nurturing environments found in Waldorf and Reggio Emilia programs.

Judaism has a longstanding commitment to excellent education and to providing an environment where children’s natural desire to learn is fostered. The Jennie empowers children from the youngest ages to ask questions, explore their curiosities, and be advocates for their learning desires. We strive for beauty and peace through respect, art, kindness, and Kehillah, the Hebrew word for community. This collaboration allows children to feel nurtured, and engage with their inner curiosity and inspiration to learn, providing a foundation for a lifelong love of learning to grow.




At The Jennie, it is our mission to provide the highest quality care to children ages 6 weeks to 5 years old, and their families. The Jennie is built on a foundation of inclusion – we are intentionally creating a diverse Kehillah, the Hebrew word for community, that celebrates all our children and their families. The Jennie provides an enriching environment interwoven with Jewish values, promoting a nurturing space for children to develop, and creating a work community where staff feel supported holistically. We value creativity, togetherness, and kindness towards our peers and the environment. We believe that children know themselves best and are ready to take in all the learning we can offer, and teachers act as guides along a child’s developmental journey. The Jennie staff understand that a child’s success is rooted in the success of their caregivers, and we invite families to be active participants in our community. This happens through volunteering in the classroom, parent education nights to learn about our educational approach and their child’s development, and through events that bring families and staff together.



Our Staff

This summer, we were thrilled to introduce Bailey Brandt as our Early Childhood Education Director, and we are in the process of hiring teachers for in anticipation of our February 12 opening.

Bailey Brandt joins us from Chicago, where she worked as a Developmental Therapist, providing play-based interventions for children aged zero to three, tackling developmental delays. Prior to that, she worked as the Director of Early Childhood Education at a Montessori-based infant and toddler school. 

She has a Masters of Science in Child Development with a concentration in Infancy and Administration from Erikson Institute, and has been working with children and families for sixteen years, both as a direct caregiver and as parent support. Bailey is beyond excited to join The Jennie and CBI, and to join CBI staff in building an incredible school for our community.

Born in the Bay Area, Bailey moved to Portland as an adolescent, where she graduated from Metropolitan Learning Center (a few blocks away from CBI!) and obtained her undergraduate degree from Portland State University. After nine years exploring Chicago (and picking up her Master’s degree!) she decided it was time to come home and be near family again.

Bailey has spent her career practicing and building on the skill set of inclusive and anti-oppression early childhood care, and feels deeply that raising children with responsive and quality caregiving is the best way to create a peaceful and joyful future for all.  She uses a relationship and community building approach, believing that our communities and interpersonal connections as adults, fuels and supports positive childcare experiences for children.

Click here to email Bailey


Jennifer Barnum Luria (z'l)

The Jennie was established thanks to the leadership of Robert Barnum, Susan Barnum, and Gil Luria, in the loving memory of their daughter and wife Jennifer Barnum Luria, and with major support from Bob and Rita Philip. It builds upon the CBI preschool foundation that was established by Abe and Sally Vidgoff and grew under the leadership of Sanny Snell and commitment of Jill Slansky.

 As construction continues and we plan for The Jennie’s inaugural year, we welcome your support


If you would like more in-depth details, or to hear about the associated naming opportunities, please reach out to Congregation Beth Israel’s Executive Director, Josh Kashinsky

Frequently Asked Questions

You do not need to be a CBI member to enroll in The Jennie–all are welcome. 

However, we do waive our $150 enrollment fee for CBI members, and member families will receive waitlist priority.  

If you have questions about becoming a CBI member, please reach out to us!

Absolutely! Everyone is welcome–and celebrated–at The Jennie! 

While Jewish values are at the heart of our programming, education and full participation at The Jennie is comfortable and accessible for our non-Jewish families. 

A sibling discount of 10% of the eldest child’s tuition is available.

The Jewish Federation of Greater Portland’s Right Start Program offers scholarship support of up to $2000 for families enrolling their children in Jewish preschool; click here for details and to apply.

The Jennie is still under construction, meaning your child(ren) will enjoy a brand-new facility designed with their learning and exploration in mind; however, it also means that we can’t show you our school just yet.

We expect to be open for tours in January, so please let us know if you are interested in one!

The Jennie provides a morning and afternoon snack for children, as well as water during all mealtimes. Parents provide a lunch, as well as any milk or milk alternative they may want their child to have. Parents provide infant formula and/or human milk as well. 

Parents are responsible for providing bottles, diapers, training pull ups, wipes, diaper cream, a reusable drink container, and extra clothes that are weather appropriate. 

We are open from 8-5 Monday through Friday, and to begin with, are only offering full time care. As the program fills up and we are operating at full capacity, we will begin to offer part time options. 

The Jennie is a child-led and art-based program. Children are given opportunities to engage with art, nature, and academic topics that lead to holistic development every day. Because the curriculum is child -led, teachers build their class routines around the children currently enrolled in their class. Jewish holidays, rituals, and rhythms are incorporated into the child’s day through music, activities, and art. 

We will begin building our own fenced-in playground on the plaza sometime in 2024, and before that is built children will have access to Couch Park, walks around the neighborhood, and playing on the plaza. Children go outside no matter what the weather, save for extreme weather conditions, in which case we have an indoor movement room.