SOUTH ORANGE, NJ -- Golda Och Academy will celebrate its 50th anniversary on June 9 at a special Birthday Celebration at the Golda and Michael Och Campus of Congregation Beth El in South Orange.

Golda Och Academy, formerly Solomon Schechter Day School of Essex and Union, opened in 1965 with 18 kindergarten and first grade students at Congregation Beth Shalom in Union, NJ. As one of the first Conservative co-educational Jewish day schools, the founders and founding families took a chance on this brand new, young school. Each year, a class was added, and the first graduating class completed high school in 1977.

Today, in 2016, Golda Och Academy has 550 students that travel from all over New Jersey to receive a Jewish day school education at its two campuses, one of which is in West Orange.

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“Our Birthday Celebration is a time to reflect on the tremendous progress Golda Och Academy has made over the last half century and to celebrate with everyone who has helped shape our history and helped us to reach this day,” said Adam Shapiro, Head of School. “Despite the location changes of the school and the physical transformations of the buildings throughout the years, Golda Och Academy has always maintained the same core values and commitment to delivering an excellent Jewish and secular education to students. I have no doubt those core values and commitment will help us continue to succeed for the next 50 years and beyond.”

More than 350 people will attend the June 9th Birthday Celebration, including the school’s founders, faculty, administration, alumni, lay leaders and donors. For more information, visit, call (973) 602-3612 or e-mail