NYC Orthodox High School Lets Girls Put On Tefillin


tefillinIs the Open Orthodox hashpa’ah in Riverdale, NY, spreading? Looks like it, unfortunately.  

SAR High School in Riverdale, New York, is now allowing girls to wrap tefillin during Shacharis. It is probably the first Modern Orthodox high school in the U.S. to do so, reports The Boiling Point, the online student newspaper of Shalhevet High School in LA.

Two girls were granted permission to wrap tefillin and wear a tallis at the school’s daily all-girls prayer meeting, according to an email sent out by Rabbi Tully Harcsztark, head of SAR’s high school, reports the Jewish Press.

Are these Maharats or Rabbas in training? Harcsztark tired to justify it halachically.

“I have given permission to two female students… to put on tefillin during tefilah,” Rabbi Harcsztark wrote in an early December 2013 e-mail to the SAR faculty, obtained by The Boiling Point, as reported by Jewish Press. “They do so every day and have not been permitted to do so in school until now. I believe that it is halachically permissible although it is a communally complicated issue.”

The churban continues.

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  1. remember – the s from sar stands for salant – the school is a combination of 3 Bronx schools – one of which is the old salante yeshiva.
    r’ yisroel salant must be crying over this R”L

  2. “The churban continues.”

    Was Rashi a churban? His daughters wore tefillin. And look the children of these tefillin wearing women had, pretty good children Rabanu Tam the Rasham they even had great grandchildren the Ri.

    So calm down, let them lead there lives and you lead your

  3. Why do girls feel the need to put on tefilin? Do they wear tzissis and yarmulkas too? Maybe they want to change the brocho “sheosani kirtzono” also to “shelo osani ish”? It is definitely not so Orthodox to change tradition. If the frummest of us don’t do it why do the “modern” ones feel the need to do it?

  4. Such a tzoris, that high school girls want to daven and become closer to Hashem…yes, this is definitely the cause of the churban.

  5. I think that the worst part about this whole situation is the misconception that people are starting to think that this is actually permitted according to Halacha.
    The Shulchan Aruch/Rama states (O.C. 38:3) that women may not put on Tefillin and that we should actively prevent women from doing so. The Mishnah Berurah, Aruch HaShulchan, Birkei Yosef, etc. all echo this sentiment and explain why this is true specifically in the context of Tefillin. In contrast, regarding other time-bound mitzvos, there is a dispute between the Rambam and Rabeinu Tam (also quotes in the Shulchan Aruch/Rama) regarding whether/not women can make berachos on time-bound mitzvos (however, everyone seems to agree that women can at least perform them).
    Furthermore, Targum Yonasan Ben Uziel writes in Devarim (22:5) that it is an issur m’d’oraiisa for women to wear tefillin (and tzitzis) because they are considered to be man’s clothing (the biblical prohibition of k’li gever).
    Unfortunately, this whole discussion has left the realm of Haskaffic disagreement, and has entered the realm of fairly clear-cut halachik AGREEMENT (amongst legitimately orthodox rabinnic authorities around the world), and it saddens me that Hashkaffa is coming to replace Halacha in some communities.

  6. #9. I suspect very strongly that these high school girls have quite a different motive for putting on Tefillin than the daughters of Rashi hakodosh.

  7. It should also be noted that there is no source whatsoever that Rashi’s daughters put on Tefillin. I have asked numerous rabbinic authorities on the matter, and they have said that it is simply untrue. The only exception was Michal bas Shaul, and this some meforahim on the Shulchan Aruch (ibid) deals with.

  8. To # 9 . When YOU have an understanding of the Torah like ??? or any of those who you have mentioned then you can even begin to open your mouth. However not you nor Any rabbi that has or will ever be produced In the future( and definitely not from weiss or his cohorts) will ever know enough to have their own ???. To even think we are on any level of ??? and those of his times is just laughable. What you are doing is destroying the Jewish ?????. And ????? isn’t what we make up. It is what we follow.

  9. Yiddishe Minhaggim are Heilig. The minhag for women to wear tefilin has long been abolished. Even if the letter of the law is that they are permitted. Our Mesora doesn’t let it.
    By destroying Mesora you destroy Yiddishkeit. These kind of New Ways have to be nipped in the bud.

  10. Why are all of you forgetting the psak of the Shulchan Aruch?
    Siman 28:3
    ? ??????? ?????????? ?????????? ????????????, ???????? ??????? ??????? ?????? ??????????? ????????: ???: ????? ?????????? ??????? ?????????? ??? ??????? ??????? ????????

    Maybe Rabbi Harcsztark needs to review his smicha.

  11. #9, the anecdote about Rashi’s daughter is popular. Can you (or any other Matzav reader) bring solid proof that in addition to being popular, this myth is actually factual?

  12. #9
    If Rashi’s daughter ever wore tefillin it was probably Rabeinu Tam’s wife. Because Rabeinu Tam seems to hold that women must wear tefillin.
    However, we do not pasken like Rabeinu Tam in this issue – anybody – ever – even l’chumra – even in private (which was probably how Rashi’s daughter did it – if she did).

  13. Anonymous –

    How you dare compare to rashi hakodesh daughters. They wore tefillin out of love for this particular mitzva of hashem. vs. these clouns that wear tefillin only due to a their crooked feminist agenda.

    This has NOTHING to do with the torah or mitzvah’s

  14. In the early ’90s there was a female student who wanted to do the same, Rabbi Bakst did not allow. There was a small uproar about the constitutional right of freedom of religious expression, which shows that the whole issue is using Yideshkeit to further your personal political agenda.
    I’m surprised at how far the modern orthodox have gone. Will there be some form of objection?

  15. When one is lacking proper Torah Hashkafa, then its only a matter of time before the slippery slope starts to decline all the more. It seems that the “Modern” are losing it. That’s a shame. Lets hope they get back on the right derech.

  16. Reb Yid: My daughters participate in an all girls daily prayer meeting. In their Bais Yaakov they daven together, and there are no men, hence a daily prayer meeting.

    Anonynous #9: There is absolutely no source more than 50 years old that says that Rashi’s daughters. It is what is called in some circles, urban legend.

  17. when rashis daughters put on teffillin they werent making a political statement. they were holy women not some stupid high school girls who put on tefillin because it was the thing to do. but good job seriously, comparing rashis daughters to a couple of flighty kids.

  18. Yidden, wake up. This is truly a churban being set up for the Jews. Gehennom is breaking loose in E.Y. and all over regarding Yiddishkeit.
    This women’s agenda is part of Weiss’ groupies in Riverdale and they have already infiltrated the Rabbinate in EY and getting their way. Today, the sonim (eisav,yishmael,erev rav), are determined to destroy Jews, but in another way, since the wars didn’t finish the job; they now want to destroy what is our life and that is, Torah. Connect the dots.

  19. For all of you naysayers who feel the need to practice the religion of the Pennsylvania Dutch, why not come to Riverdale for a Shabbos. Expand your horizons. Maybe you may learn something about Halochoh and Torah and Yiddishkeit. Until then continue worshipping the Avodah Zarah that you call frumkeit which is a farce.

  20. 2/500 students is less than one percent.
    This was written to people who work there not to the world u have no evidence they seek to reform judaisim

  21. #9, could you please provide a source regarding Rashi’s daughters? You can’t because there is no such source. It’s a Jewish urban legend.

  22. As is well documented in current scholarly literature, there is NO SOURCE anywhere for the myth/urban legend that the daughters of Rashi wore tefillin. It never happened. Anyone who wants to justify this SAR distortion of halacha and mesorah by invoking Rashi’s daughters, please provide a source if you’d like to be taken seriously. (Of course, this is merely a rhetorical challenge, as I already know that no such source exists.)

  23. This is not about wearing tefilin this all about liberalism and I guarantee they have no idea what halachos are entailed when wearing tefilin! Rachmono Litzlon! If these people were like Rashi’s daughters it would be a different story but unfortunately they have other agendas. Don’t be fooled by their pious talk that is just the Satan dancing between their feet.

  24. Rashi’s daughters wore tefilin? Show me the mekor! – it doesnt exist! it started from a claim by a reform femenist author, and now everyone takes it as fact. You will not see this claim in ANY rabbinic sefer.

    Further more, its a clear Rem”a in hilchos tefilin, that if a woman wears them we must protest!

    It is a question if she can do it btzena- in privacy of her own room though.

  25. Why is this surprising? Most Modern Orthodox women don’t cover their hair and wear pants. There are two BASIC words missing from their vocabulary… Mesorah and Halacha!

  26. To Eli #11…and I’m sure that the girls are on the same madreiga as Devorah Haneviah…for sure…………
    BTW…are you the Eli, originally from Willi???Now practicing OO.? just asking

  27. I know for a fact that Rashi’s daughters wore Tefilin. They, however wore Rabbeinu Tam’s tefillin which was ok for women according to Rashi.