Readers’ Matzav: Education for All


school-busDear Editor,

As the summer gets underway, most people aren’t thinking about the first day of school in September. However, before you know it, girls will be trying on uniforms, buying school sweaters, etc. It may not have occurred to many people that come September, your daughter’s friend, acquaintance, or neighbor will be sitting at home because they have not been accepted into a school. How can we sit back and allow this to happen?

It is imperative upon each of us to take action now to avoid this happening in the future. Let us band together to protest this unnecessary pain that can affect these children for the rest of their lives. Let us call the principals and directors of the schools to let them know how we feel. Maybe we should keep our children home until every child, from every frum home, has been accepted into an institution.

What has happened to our priorities in a society where only the top academic students or the well-connected students are assured a slot in a school? Where are the weaker students supposed to go? Is this what Sarah Schenirer had in mind when she founded the Bais Yaakov system?

Shouldn’t all the schools unite and make sure that each bas Yisroel is accepted, before the letters go out, to save the humiliation and pain that comes along with rejection?

Our chinuch should be building neshamos, not destroying them.

M. G.

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  1. The concept of community school is no longer a popular one. It’s understandable, in a way. Once a community is clearly large enough for a second school, that second school is likely going to be more parochial in its nature to distinguish it from the first school.

  2. It is for this reason that many American askanim took such a hard line on the Emmanuel Bais Yaakov. Jewish education is the birthright of EVERY Jewish child. Both rich and poor, strong and weak, smart and less gifted ALL stood at Har Sinai and accepted the Torah, K’Ish Echad.

    A community school funded by community tzedakah should be for any CHILD who desires to attend. If a family decides that their child should attend a co-ed high school, but the child is willing to follow the Yeshiva/Bais Yaakov rules that child must be accepted. The child is being educated NOT the parents.

  3. Or, the “better” schools can accept every girl and put up a mechitza in the hall and in the schoolyard to separate the smarter girls from the weaker ones.

    I have heard this method employed in very holy schools, and we should take our queues from them to keep out negative elements. Supposedly, it works quite well.

  4. I for one will not send my daughter to a school that accepts just anyone.

    Just look to E’Y, where people were willing (and did) go to jail so they did not have to send daughters to the same school as those they consider “less frum”.

    Why shouldn’t we have the same standard here? We should make an example that our Bais Yaacovs are only for those families that we see as fit, not just for anyone.

    We should rally in the streets, just as in E’Y, if we are forced to have our schools take in just anyone.

    Enough with this liberal agenda, Daas Toarh said we should keep out those families, who are we to go against it?

  5. Historically, Jewish schools accepted those who had brains or money (the more you had of one, the less you needed of the other.) Even Hillel had to prove how smart he was, and almost froze to death until he was allowed in. Maybe you don’t like it, but Jewish schools have always been selective.

  6. Why wait for school to start to close the schools so every child gets in, do it before the summer so everyone could enjoy their summer! HATZLACHA!

  7. Oh, I thought you were going to talk about girls who were sitting at home because their parents cannot afford to pay tuition. That’s what I fear for my daughters this fall.

  8. “Just look to E’Y, where people were willing (and did) go to jail so they did not have to send daughters to the same school as those they consider “less frum”

    They went to jail to protest the meddling of the supreme court in chinuch.

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