A Reader Writes: The Matzav With School Acceptance – A Levelheaded Discussion

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school-desksDear Editor,

I have been there and I have seen it. I have felt it. There’s no pain like. Not having your child enrolled in a school is heartbreaking. But as this crisis comes each year, so many untruths are spread, and to those who have been affected by the situation, and those who put their heart and soul into solving the problem, it is so bothersome when the facts are not presented properly.

Last year, I wrote on this very site that I hoped it would be the last time that we’d have girls who have not been enrolled in a school just weeks before school starts. At the time, a friend of mine had a daughter who was not accepted into a school. I give Matzav.com credit for raising the issue at the time with decency and respect. This site  served as an excellent forum to discuss the issues. I believe much healthy discussion ensued. However, I think a few details need to be reiterated because so many fingers are being pointed and so many people are quick to blame.

I myself went through this terrible ordeal last year too. July arrived and my daughter did not have a school. I’d prefer not to provide additional specifics to protect our privacy. I must say that in the weeks that followed I saw why Lakewood is as special a place as there is. So many people were there to try to help. Most were powerless, for a number of reasons, to help. But the care and concern were remarkable. While I am out of the woods, so to speak, a friend of mine has a daughter who hasn’t been accepted into a school for this year. Admittedly, there were some issues raised regarding some hanhagos – for lack of a better term – of the family, and after a heart-to-heart discussion with my friend, he conceded that he understood why his daughter was not accepted into a number of schools.

But all that is secondary right now. What is important right now is as follows.

We in Lakewood have a shortage of schools. The classrooms are jammed. The present school owners have encouraged others to open mosdos, but doing so is no walk in the park. There are loads of headaches and the financial responsibility is something that, in the words of one local askan, “you have to be meshugeh to take on your shoulders.” So it’s very easy to say, “Open up more mosdos.” It’s a very different thing to actually go and do it.

So this is the most important detail: There’s a shortage of classroom desks, according to what I have been told.

With a shortage comes a tight selection process. When a school can only accept a limited number of students, can you blame them if they wish to put forth a strict policy and attempt to accept those who best fit their criteria?

And I’d like to debunk a myth. It is totally false that one who works has a difficult time getting his child into a school. I work, my brothers work, and anytime any of us had trouble getting our child into a school, it had nothing to do with the fact that we are no longer learning full time. We are strong in our Yiddishkeit, we are ehrlich, and you can see it – and the schools see it and recognize it.

An unfortunate result of this crisis and shortage is that those people who actually have gone ahead and opened schools are painted as villains. People are rodef them. People call them all sorts of names. Somehow, whenever there is a student who is not in a school, it is the fault of this person who owns this school and that person who owns that school.

With such treatment, why would any sane person want to open a school? And then we wonder why we have a shortage of classrooms?

So there’s no money. There’s constant flack. What exactly do we want from the ehrliche school owner? (I am not referring to those who unfortunately run mosdos as businesses. Thatis an issue to be dealt with as well.)

The schools can’t even collect the reduced tuition they ask for, and there’s virtually no way for them to force a family to pay, other than throwing their children out of the school, which won’t happen. So why are we surprised that people are hesitant to open schools?

Believe me, it it were easy, we’d have tens of mosdos popping up every year.

There are a number of reasons why the situation in Lakewood is different than in New York. One reason is that in New York, because of the community’s size, we don’t hear about the students who may not be in a school. Secondly, there are many more schools, and more schools with available room. There are other reasons too.

But we need to stop pointing fingers, and instread put our heads together to come up with a long-term solution so we don’t have this every year, where a week or days before school starts there are students who haven’t been placed.

Someone made a valid point when they told me that if we had one girls school for every five boys mesivtos we’d be okay. Well said. Every year, five mesivtos open up (which means five more annual parlor meetings!), and they are all vying for the same bochurim. Many of the mesivtos or botei medrash struggle. With girls schools it’s the opposite.

We have to figure out a way to maximize the limited resources of our system.

Personally, I don’t know what the answer is. We have mosdos that are so far behind on bills. If a mammoth Brooklyn school like Bais Yaakov of Boro Park can be fighting for survival, it’s no wonder that all mosdos are hanging on by the skin of their teeth.

So we need to analyze this and come up with a plan. But it is important that before we get into a blame game and start pointing fingers at schools for being too selective or not wanting to take in girls from families that are less makpid on certain areas of halacha or hashkafa, we should realize that it is mainly a result of a lack of space. If there were more schools, there would be mosdos for all different types and the friction would be reduced. Of course there are always people who only want to send to this mosad or that one, but the situation would change drastically if there were more schools and more possibilities.

How do we do that? I don’t know. Better yet, how do we fund more schools when our current schools are teetering? I don’t know.

This issue is a hot button one and much of the discussion usually goes off track and focuses on trivialities and less important details.

Last year, I worked on behalf of a friend to get his daughter into a school. There were people who hated me for it because I had to apply pressure on others. I didn’t want to, but I held it was b’geder “lo saamod al dam reyecha.” At the same time, I saw clearly that more often than not, there was no one to blame! I was begging a rosh hamosad who had 30 kids in a class to take in “just one more.” Can I really blame him if he tells me that he has to draw the line somewhere? And yes, even when it came to my own daughter, I was able to remove myself from my negiyus and say objectively that in the large majority of my dealings, I could not blame the mosdos. Sure, there were people who said some rude things (which I made sure my wife didn’t here), but I am a grown man with my head on my shoulders. I know what I’m worth and no one can take that away from me. I looked past it. I had my eye on the goal, not on the problems or the difficult people.

But looking back, I see an overtaxed system.

[Before I conclude, I must tell you that there are serious problems that should be addressed. We have unnencessary pressure in many high schools, where academics are all that counts. We have that in many Bais Yaakovs across the country, and it is ridiculous. We are hounding the girls with obscene amounts of work and have created a rat race of who has higher academic standards. Meanwhile, we are working our girls to the bone for really no good reason. ]

I would rather conclude on an uplifting note, but I honestly don’t see the answer to this problem. I believe it is tied into the parnassah crisis and tuition crisis. It is all interconnected. We don’t have enough funding for our schools, our yeshivos – and for our lifestyles generally. Frum Yidden are faced with so many responsibilities and obligations that the world around us doesn’t have, yet we are paid the same salaries as everyone else – or less. For years we relied on very wealthy and generous baalei tzedakah who may have carried various mosdos on their own. Now that is gone and we are left to fend for ourselves. And we are losing. Our current mosdos are struggling and yet we need more schools.

I do not know the answer, but Matzav.com readers, let us discuss this and brainstorm without the finger pointing and without the blame. And let each person truly be honest about where they belong, what they should really be doing, how they should really acting, and above all, what Hashem really wants each of us to do.


A Parent Who Cares


  1. Well written . I am friendly with someone who opened a school in Lakewood . Unfortunately he would never do it again . He juggles debts daily ,cant collect tuitions etc etc . But that in itself is not a problem . the biggest problem is the nasmes he is called and the bizyonos he gets for no other reason than telling people that unfortunately he has no more room . They dont believe him and always assume he has something against them and that he is an evil person .

    By all rights ,the Community should tax everybody and fund schools ,like the public schools do . Since we dont do that ,we rely on “Meshugaim” like this person ,to voluntarily open schools . Their only schar is getting called the worst kind of names .

    No wonder fewer and fewer people want to do it .

  2. > “And let each person truly be honest about where they belong, what they should really be doing, how they should really acting, and above all, what Hashem really wants each of us to do.”

    >> “A Parent Who Cares” ended his essay with four kashas. In my humble opinion, here are the terutzim:

    (1) Where do we belong? In Eretz Yisrael!

    (2) What should we be doing? Recognizing that the increasing difficulties we are facing are signs from Hashem that we don’t belong here anymore in Obama’s America! (He should be the last president of our golus).

    (3) How should we be acting? With emunah that the final geula has already begun and joining the thousands of other ba’alei emunah who have already made their Aliyah flights with Nefesh B’Nefesh!

    (4) What does Hashem really want us to do? Stop clinging to this American golus as if we have an unlimited future here, and go home!

    As I’ve quoted often, Rav Yosef Chaim Sonnenfeld zt”l said that in our generation “we voluntarily stay in golus” and that those who can make Aliayh but make innumerable excuses not to “will be answerable for their failure in Olam Haba.” (Ha’ish Al Hachoma, vol. II, p. 149)

  3. Let us assume that there was no bakery in Lakewwod .Let us assume that baking bread was a financially losing proposition . I assume the Community would unite and build a Baskery with communal funds .

    When schooling becomes as important to us as our food ,then we will solve this problem . The phenomena of allowing private people to become responsible to make our schools is going to destroy us ch:v . It can not last as the financiasl drain is too great . Only the Community as a whole has the finacial power to tax for the schools .

    nfortunately since there will never be a true Community VAAD HAIR in Lakewood ( for reasons I will not get into ) it will be impossible to have the community do sanything of this sort and we will always have this problem fester on us .

    The only real solution is a communal solution . By Chasidim they have a Kehila that everybody is loyal to . If not you chasnge to a different Chasidus with a different Kehila . We do not have that and probably never will . Therefore we are stuck in this rut .

  4. The problem is not that we don’t have a loyal Vaad that everyone listens to. the issue is the “feinshmekers” of the community who it was beneath their dignity to send their children to a” Shtut Mosad” they were the first to open their own schools and from that started a trend that that schools is a status of your lifestyle not a place to educate your children .unfortunately this has seeped deep in our community both by the yeshivisher and ball habatich crowds as well as the chasiddisher crowds too. In turn what used to be the big shtuts mosdos no longer see it fit that they take evreyone once there are other options and from this we are doomed.
    we need 100 parents of boys and girls to get together and open a new large mosad with the framework of a community school let them incorperate some of the smaller schools and bring the pride back to communal education it will thus be a hischayvus as well as a privelage to support the school.

  5. For all those who think like you that the end all and be all solution is moving to Eretz Yisrael,cf Piskei Teshuva E.H. 75,3 who writes unless you are assured of Parnassa in Eretz Yisrael, you should not move there. (This is also the opinion of the Pele Yoetz).

    Moving to Eretz Yisrael is something to long for (Cf B.M. 75a), however to move there without a plan is not only irresponsible, but against halacha as well.

  6. I agree with you that technically a SHTUT MOISAD would be the way . But you are wrong on the history . Even we there was only one school in town ,it was not a shtut moisad ,run by the Shtut . It was a private Moisad and nobody other than the owners had a say in it .

    It was a Shtut Moisad only in name by virtue of it being the only one in town ,a monopoly . So you can not blame those that made other private Moisdos ,because there was no responsibility to the Klal by any Moisad ,other than being a monopoly . If the Town would have ,many years ago ,elected a truly Community wide Sheva Tuvei Hair and everybody was made a voting member ,then we would have had the ability to creat Moisdos run by the Kehila ,for the Kehila ,with the proper input from ALL members of the Kehila .

    But that did not happen for various reasons and wont happen fpr the same reason today .

    Unfortunately even if that reason ever gets removed ,by that time we will have become too large and diverse a Community to ever organize a truly all encompassing VAAD HAIR

  7. It is very hard to have a Community school when we have no Community . By Chasidim to a certain degree ,they all are on the same page and feel part of their Kehila . Lakewood has now grown so large and diverse ,there is certainly no sense of Achdus or Community anymore . We have many mini Kehilas of varying degrees of Yeshivish ,different Chasidim ,regular fine Flatbush type Balei Batim etc . There will never be one community school that will make everybody happy . So 100 parents can definitely make a school and it can definitely succeed ,but eventually it will have to decide on Hashkofahs ,and those Haskofahs will invariably not be appealing to a large number of the div erse population . So it will also just become another private school . It might be more liberal and tolerant in its application process ,but it will never truly be a Community wide school

  8. Once upon a time balebatim would step up to the plate and address the needs of a kehila. They would approach a respected Ish Chinuch and ask that educator to form a school, hire staff and design a curriculum. They would take responsibility for the financial details allowing the Ish Chinuch to focus his attention on the educational end.

    That is how true community schools (such as the famed Bais Yaakov of Boro Park) were created.

    Today, schools are founded by individuals who often have no background in Chinuch. They appoint themselves as Czar of their new schools while collecting public funds.

    The lack of cooperation between schools (ie. competing “businesses”) and the phenomenon of children left without a seat in the classroom are a direct result of the “balebosification” of our mosdos hachinuch.

    The emphasis is on the status of the school and the financial abilities of the parent body. Prestige is the name of the game and the basic tenets of chinuch are trampled while the new goals are held high.

    If one wishes to become a plumber he must obtain a state license. This requires years of apprenticeship with an ackowledged master plumber coupled with tests in every facet of the trade. After five years or so an apprentice can finally apply for his own license.

    Sadly, we require much more expertise and experience when it comes to installing our bathrooms than we do when it comes to opening and controling our mosdos hachinuch.

    Of course, we all have the choice to ignore the balebatim-owned schools and go right ahead and open schools as was done in the good-old-days. But this is not practical because once the individual balebatim open their schools the will of the community just isn’t there anymore to open schools on their own.

    The community funded Torah Umesorah organization(under the direction of their Rabbinic Board) should formulate a basic framework for a new school to become “accredited”. Perhaps balebatim will fear the bizyonos of not making the grade and we can go back to the community schools of old.

    For now, even the mosdos originally created as community schools are degenerating and becoming the personal fiefdoms of aggresive administrators who take advantage of the lack of involvement by the official balebatim (as in Lakewood Cheder / Bais Faiga) and claim the school as their own private property.

    To be a true balebos means to take achrayus and put in days and nights without being the “owner” of the school or deriving any other personal benefit. It means investing sweat and money and kochos (a la Avraham Fruchthandler and his partners at Chaim Berlin). It does not mean putting your name on the letterhead and going to a meeting every few months.

    Does Klal Yisroel still possess such people?

  9. Response To #7:

    Who’s saying to move without a plan?

    1) As Rabbi Zev Leff points out in his essay “Where is the Religious Aliyah From the West?” most Bnei Torah in America never even ask the sh’aila of a Rov whether they should be making Aliyah? Why? Because they probably wouldn’t be too comfortable with the answer: “YOU have no excuse not to go.”

    I haven’t done a survey, but probably tens of thousands of Bnei Torah are financially able to make aliyah, but don’t do so because they are too attached to this goldena medinah.

    2) If 300,000 frum Yidden made Aliyah, it would create by itself the economic infrastructure that any community, town, yishuv, etc. requires to function: schools, blue and white collar businesses, service industries, professional practices, etc. etc.

    3) I don’t believe for a moment that we don’t have the wherewithal to accomplish large scale “new community” planning and development in Eretz Yisrael, whereby entire Kehilahs can move in progressive phases.

    4) After our hishtadlus, Emunas Hashem will carry us the rest of the way; but not until we realize and act with the deep acceptance that Lakewood is not the new Yerushalayim. I have actually heard some refer to it as Lakewood Iyr HaKodesh (ch”v). Even when said ‘tongue in cheek’ it is a reflection of a terrible mindset.

    5) If Rav Yosef Chaim and the Chazon Ish expected large scale aliyah already in their generation (when life in Eretz Yisrael was so much harder) is not that good enough for us today. Do you think that they did not know your mekoros? With all due respect, yours are exactly the kinds of excuses that we come up with — to justify “longing for Eretz Yisrael” but doing nothing concrete to advance the geula through Aliyah — that Rav Yosef Chaim and the Chazon Ish bemoaned.

  10. If they were truly collecting a lot of public funds you might have a point . In Lakewood the vast majority of funding comes from tuitions and donations by parents ,grandparents relatives of parents and friends of the school owners . The parents are the ones demanding the exclusivity so as to not ( whether rightly or wrongly ) expose their children to foreign ideas .

    So their is really very little truly public money coming in ,for you to be able to have a public say in any Moisad

  11. #2 You got it right.

    #7 Parnosa in America is at an all low, do you know people who are planning their aliyah? It aint the parnosa that is the issue, it is leaving the golden medinah.

  12. To #2 “Shua Cohen”

    Moving to the Holyland is not always a magical solution, especially with older children. Just come see how many at-risk kids there are in the American-charedi communities due to the culture shock they experienced, and you will understand why people aren’t dropping everything and boarding the next plane. A child that was born and raised in Chutz L’aretz will have to undergo a very big adjustment and the older they are the more difficult it is. This is besides the parnassa issue which was mentioned above.

  13. The current article is not about aliyah, and I apologize if I got off on this collateral subject. But reading the comments on this thread is very depressing. It is, at bottom, an ignoring of the underlying WHY of our chinuch problems (and the many other problems currently plaguing our frum communities) and looking for solutions which indicate that we expect to continue to remain in golus for the foreseeable future.

    Do we truly believe that this is a time of ikvesa d’meshicha? By our behaviors (which indicate a state of mind), apparently not. The nature of our debates (including this one about chinuch in Lakewood) and our attempts to improve our lot in golus do not seem to me to be the actions of a people who believe that the geula is imminent.

    The Lakewood police on a ticketing campaign is nothing more than a ‘potch’ from the Ribbono Shel Olam. The current chinuch crisis is a little stronger of a ‘clop.’ As I’ve asked previously, how bad will it have to become before we ‘get it’…before we understand Hashem’s message that it’s time to leave.

    A final note: Nefesh B’Nefesh claims that 98% of it’s sponsored Olim are successful in their Aliyah. Is this a coincidence? Of course not. These true Balei Emunah have received chizuk and hatzlacha from the Ribbono Shel Olam for getting the message, for advancing the geula with their bodies — and not just by their “longings” — and investing their Jewish futures in Eretz Yisrael. The rest of us are mired in golus, oy veying our problems but, nevertheless, staying put. Is this what the Ribbono Shel Olam wants from us now? Sadly, I don’t think so. But what do I know?

  14. Is living in chutz the only or biggest aveira? Of course it’s one of the choshuvsta kehilos, but what about tznius? Long human-hair shaitels? Fitted clothing? The dating scene? Is THIS what the Ribbono Shel Olam wants from us?

  15. Response to “Tanna Kamma” (no. 15)

    1) you don’t have to put “Shua Cohen” in quotes. I do not comment with a fictitious handle. It’s my name.

    2) See my follow up comments, numbers 11 & 16. Sorry , but once again: excuses…excuses. This time the typical “older child” excuse.

    Whoever said it would be easy for the family? Chazal say that Eretz Yisrael can only be acquired through hardship…through challenges. There are no guarantees, but those who sincerely make the attempt will have siyata dishmaya.

    Questions: Does the “older child” not learn about the importance of the mitzvah of yishuv ha’aretz in Yeshiva? Does the older child not comprehend the words of Rav Yosef Chaim and the Chazon Ish encouraging Bnai Torah to come? Does the older child not get chizuk and encouragement from the parents for a successful aliyah? Does the older child not have Emunas Hashem that HE will help them to overcome their adjustment difficulties?

    No one is underestimating the challenges and difficulties of aliyah. But no one should exaggerate them either, for the sole purpose of providing parents with a convenient excuse not to go.

  16. What does the oilam think about seeking (or demanding) funding for new schools from those who have the most responsibility (and profit) from the tremendous expansion in population which has led to the overcrowding in the schools?

  17. I’m a Bal Tshuva, not far from Lakewood, and what strikes me most from reading this post and the replies, is the ridiculous fragmentation of out people. “Our holy Litvishe Mesorah”? “Our Chassidishe Kehillah”? Kids not accepted by schools because they/their family don’t “fit” some ridiculous criteria?
    I’m sorry, you all bring it upon yourselves. Stop judging others. Stop looking for differences. You are not better than your neighbor if you learn full time, nor if you work full time. We are Am Echad, not a bunch of separate competing enclaves. Get your heads out of the sand. I went to public school and for all it’s negatives, I’ve NEVER seen this kind of shtus.

  18. Bubby

    You will never get retroactive money . Taxing the builders effectively taxes the buyers ,as the tax will be passed on to the price . It would have been a good idea if we started 10 or 15 years ago . Now people will say its unfair with thousands of untaxed houses ,why only the new guys .

  19. I completely disagree with the writer. I moved from out of town and was unable to get my child into school until one month into the school year. While there were many wonderful individuals who were involved and did finally succeed into getting my child into school, my experience with the school system was disgraceful. They should all be ashamed of themselves! I don’t believe that it had anything to do with space. Space was only a convenient excuse. And No! my daughter did not have any reason not to be accepted into school! She is a wonderful girl from a wonderful family who was always sought after in the other places she lived. I believe the only reason for the delay was that we moved from “out of town”, which is a dirty word..

    Shame on all those responsible for misusing their power! And thanks to all those individuals that are always there to help another yid!

  20. I liked the comment that the girls work too much on academics. There is the solution! Keep them home, and keep them stupid. Let them sit , knit, and be tznius. That’s their hishtadlus, the Aibishter will take care of the rest.

  21. Shua, again you are ignoring the facts and leaving everything to siyatta dishmya. A person has to make an honest decision whether Aliya will really be beneficial for his family before he throws up his hands & relies on Heaven that everything will work itself out.
    The only way it might work for everybody is if there would be a mass exodus of 300,000 so everyone would find his place. Given the current housing situation in Israel that’s unlikely to happen anytime soon.

  22. The real problem is people think the girls are the boys. We should be looking to educate the weakest of the girls first, so they are able in turn to educate their children when they get married, and not the best. Those with strong backround will be successful regardless. (if there is room ,so nothing wrong with all of them learning ). Instead we go after the best girls ,with the best families ,with the best backrounds ,to build the best schools ,with the best names,who get the best shidduchim. We does this leave us all? With the best and the rest. Is this really what Sarah Schneir intended when she set up the bais yaakov movement? “talmidat chochomim”?

  23. I must say there are allot of good points mentioned in this forum. I would like to add though that many kids are not accepted into schools because of preconceived ideas about the household…too liberal…or too FRUM….and the fiefdom’s (I like the word because these really are private businesses)don’t necessarily take the time to research it.

    Out of curiousity all these schools that have building funds, and they all do, if chas v’sholom one would close where would the proceeds of the sale go?? Or for that matter the prinipal as this is all Tzedakkah money?

  24. Response to Tanna Kamma (comment no. 24)

    I really don’t wish to belabor the point, so this will be my last post on this issue.

    I am not discussing the sudden mass movement of hundreds of thousands of Jews. Rather, as I discussed above, I advocate a recognition on the part of our leaders — lay leaders, rabbonim and roshei yeshiva — that it’s time to call for the end of our golus and establish a plan for leaving America. What needs to follow is a carefully planned aliyah, executed in stages, employing the full talents and resources of the 20% of American Jewry who call themselves Orthodox, and to whom “L’shana Ha’ba B’Yerushalayim” is not just an empty, anachronistic sentiment.

    Examples of this type of successful community development for Olim include:

    1) Efrat: spearheaded 25 years ago by Rabbi Shlomo Riskin (formerly of the upper west side of Manhattan) whose population is now approaching 10,000. Yes indeed, an incredible display of Siyata Dishmaya.

    2) Moshav Mattityahu: led by Rabbi Zev Leff, (formerly of Miami Beach) which according to it’s website is anxiously seeking to expand its growth with new Olim.

    3) Nofei Hashemesh: a very recent development spearheaded by Rabbi Sholom Rosner (formerly of Woodmere, NY) which is expected to grow by leaps and bounds as new housing units are being built.

    Note that these communities are populated mostly by English speaking American Olim. Because of this, the adjustment problems for older children that concern you are largely addressed.

    In my humble opinion, Rabbis Riskin, Leff and Rosner are the true leaders of Klal Yisrael in this generation. They are the visionaries who have come to realize that Klal Yisrael has NO future in golus — that our ONLY future is in Eretz Yisrael. Among those who have followed their lead you will find no vague, anemic “longings” for Yerushalayim, but true Balei Emunah.

    My dearest Tanna Kamma, you can keep coming up with all the excuses in the world to justify staying in America. It’s an unfortunate golus mentality which afflicts too many here. Not wanting to be made to feel guilty, they wish that I and my comments would simply go away.

    You know, there’s a saying from the days of the Vietnam War protests: “If you’re not part of the solution, you’re part of the problem.” Rabbis Riskin, Leff and Rosner became a part of the solution. They don’t sit around oy veying tickets in Lakewood, bemoaning tuitions in Boro Park, cursing the summer traffic on Route 17 to the mountains, wringing their hands over the shidduch crisis in their communities, planning their new McMansion in Lawrence, juggling the next Pesach family extravaganza in Disney World…ad nauseam.

    They heeded the powerful words of Rav Yosef Chaim Sonnenfeld and refused to VOLUNTARILY stay in this increasingly pathetic golus. They contemplated standing before the Beis Din Shel Ma’alah, accused of FAILING to make aliyah when they knew they should, and decided to act.

    The rest of us, planning for and clinging to a continued existence in golus America, are to be pitied. As for me, I am out of here as soon as my name comes up on the Nefesh B’Nefesh waiting list…G-d willing, very soon.

  25. Moshe (August 24, 2009 at 7:07 PM), thank you for your thought-out comments:
    “You will never get retroactive money … Taxing the builders effectively taxes the buyers ,as the tax will be passed on to the price . It would have been a good idea if we started 10 or 15 years ago . Now people will say its unfair with thousands of untaxed houses ,why only the new guy”

    I see what you mean, it should have been done long ago. But, if overbuilding and bringing people into town when the schools have no room is a large part of the problem, it needs to be looked at.

    I’d like to know if anyone has talked to the builders and asked them to help start new schools.

    Also, if they are going to just keep on building and building, the problem is only going to get worse, so maybe there does have to be a way of instituting some kind of tax. At least, somebody should be thinking about it!

  26. Gone are the days when our fathers came to the “golda medina” and found no gold.They were moseh nefesh for yiddishkeit.They couldn`t get jobs because they were shomer shabbos but THEY KEPT SHABBOS!THEY OPENED UP YESHIVOS AND BAIS YAAKOVS BECAUSE WHEN THEY DID GET JOBS IT WAS FROM MORNING TILL NITE THAT THEY WORKED AND THEY WANTED THEIR CHILDRN TO have a frum torahdige education. But laida laida what have we now?WE have these big pompous yeshivas ,run by financial dictators whose family foundations “support” the yeshiva.” Nebech the “giver`s sons ,son in laws and other family are the rebbes in these mosdos,and if they are not qualified;have no idea how to be “mechanech our children, so be it.And I am sorry to say but our puppet leaders can`t or won`t do anything.

  27. I have another possible solution:

    Move out-of-town. No, I don’t mean out of Brooklyn. I mean out of Lakewood. Move of of the Holy City of Lakewood back to the town you came from. Or, if you did come from Brooklyn, try checking out those cities that you have only heard about. There are many large communities in the US and some of them have top-of-the-line Yeshivas. (Think Chicago, Cleveland, Baltimore, etc. Even Toronto, although it’s in Canada.)

    These communities offer a smaller, closer community where factions are not so divided, where every Yid counts, and where schools are not so difficult. Parnassah is also easier than in the Lakewood area – there are more jobs and fewer people chasing them. they also offer a more varied community agewise, with more people around to play surrogate Bube or Zeide to the kids, to help out because they aren’t overwhelmed themselves. Maybe you could even stay in your hometown near your parents….

    Who says getting married = moving to Lakewood automatically? Why condemn your kids to being one number in a crowd? (Why do it to yourself, for that matter?)

    Yes, there is a world beyond Lakewood, and it even has Mosdos.

  28. To Bubbie

    Taxing development is a good theoretical idea but will never happen in Lakewood . A tx can only happen if we have a Kehilla where everybody is a voting member and everybody without exception is responsible to follow the rules of the Kehila . There are interests in town that will never allow a true voting Kehilah to happen . ( I am not taking a position on the legitimacy of these interests ) Therefore nobody will ever feel that they have to listen to anybody else . Its a good idea ,but not one that will ever come to fruition .

    to MR UPSET

    You might be upset but you are wrong . While there are definitely many schools that operate as family businesses regarding jobs etc ,there are certainly many in our town that are run without giving jobs to family members . So it is not fair to generalize and demean those that are doing an important service for YOUR children



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