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Shalom School Library

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Our History

The Shalom School serves Sacramento, California’s preschool to sixth-grade population as an independent Jewish day school. The school currently serves approximately 150 students.

Shalom School’s mission is to provide each child with an outstanding education in a nurturing environment that is academically excellent, inclusive, innovative, and inspired by Jewish values and traditions.

The Shalom School was founded in 1978 and was first located near the former Jewish Federation of the Sacramento Region building. In 2007, the school librarian, Ben Pastcan, with the assistance of many parent volunteers, moved our library collection to our new school location near the Mosaic Law Congregation, and the Kashenberg, Ostrow, and Hayward Library and Cultural Center.

Highlights of Our Collection


The Shalom School Library houses approximately 10,000 books. It includes an extensive Holocaust/Shoah collection, PJ Library books in Hebrew as well as English, Yiddish books, a Torah as well as an ark, Hebrew books, Yiddish books, and books that are about Israel.  Recently the library has become a library media center. Maura Cromwell, the Director of Curriculum and Instruction, and Frannie Magnani, a Fifth Grade Teacher, forged a new path to the media center. In 2009, Shalom School staff along with other Jewish Day Schools in the Bay Area learned in Israel via a grant by the Jim Joseph Foundation. We studied together with other schools and purchased other books for the library in Hebrew.


One Friday each month Shalom School’s Director of Jewish Life and Learning, Denise Crevin, and PJ Library Coordinator Kelli Brogan present our Shabbat Stay and Play for one to two year olds.  The program consists of Shabbat songs, holiday programs, the blessing over the candles, Challah, and grape juice.

We promote reading by raising funds for our library via our Annual Scholastic Book Fair.

Author Visits

The Hardest Word by Jacqueline Jules

The Passover Guest by Susan Kusel

Chicken Soup, Chicken Soup by Pamela Mayer

The Ninth Night of Hanukkah by Erica Perl

Dinosaur on Passover by Diane Levin Rauchwerger 

Turtle Boy by M. Evan Wolkenstein

Our Partnership with AJL

Since 2007, the Shalom School Library has received Advanced Accreditation from AJL. Their support and programming have enabled the Shalom School Library to maintain our Jewish identity and the values.  AJL has also enabled our students to experience authors both in person and via Zoom.  Thank you to Rivka Yerushalmi, current secretary of AJL and former Sydney Taylor Book Award Committee member, for her financial support of the library for sponsoring author visits..

Plans for Our Future

We plan to continue expanding our vibrant preschool and merging first with second grade, third with fourth grade, and fifth with sixth grade.  

Ben Pastcan, Librarian

Librarian Ben Pastcan received his Bachelor’s degree from the University of California, Santa Cruz in Sociology and his Master’s in Library Information Science from San Jose State University.  He began working at Shalom School in 2007. His first task was relocating the library collection to its present location.  He implemented the change to the Open Source Automated Library System.

Contact Us

Shalom School Library
2320 Sierra Boulevard
Sacramento, CA 95825

Ben Pastcan

Phone (916) 485-4151

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