Rav Elyashiv Quoted as Criticizing Bagatz Ruling Against Emanuel Bais Yaakov

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rav-elyashiv-small-picMaran Rav Yosef Shalom Elyashiv has been quoted as criticizing the Bagatz (Supreme Court) following its ruling in the matter of ethnic separation in the Bais Yaakov school in Emanuel.

In a meeting with Deputy Education Minister MK Meir Porush yesterday, Rav Elyashiv was quoted as saying that the ruling is “”dreadful” and that this “should prompt a great outcry.”

The chareidi public in general is upset with Judges Levy, Arbel and Melcer, who fined the Bais Yaakov chool and issued a contempt of court ruling against it. The court also subpoenaed the parents of Ashkenazi students who stopped sending their children to the school.

Meanwhile, the Kol Hacharedi news hotline reported that the Slonimer Rebbe ordered his chassidim who live in Emanuel not to abide by the court ruling, despite the threat of imprisonment.

“I am willing to be the first to sit in prison over this issue,” the Rebbe was quoted as saying, and compared it to the situation in which “Jews sat in Russian prisons over their children’s education.”

He further declared his intention to attend the session on the children’s parents slated to take place at the Bagatz at the end of the month.

The Bagatz on Wednesday issued a contempt of court ruling against the Independent Education Center, which is responsible for operating chareidi schools, due to its failure to force Ashkenazi students in the Bais Yaakov school for girls in Emmanuel to attend classes.

By failing to do so, the court said, the Center “helped violate an order to remove any sign of discrimination which prevailed in the school.”

The court ordered the Independent Education Center to pay NIS 5,000 (about $1,353) for each day it avoids implementing the verdict.

The judges also ruled that the parent of each Ashkenazi student who has stopped showing up for classes after the verdict would be subpoenaed to a court hearing at the end of April, where they would be required to explain their actions and might be accused of contempt of court – a move which may lead to arrests or fines. The parents will also be required to explain where their daughters have been studying since their strike began.

{Yair Alpert-Matzav.com Israel/Ynet}


  1. Maybe we should wait for an official statement by the Rav Shlita and not go by whatever gossip is on the street.

    Misreporting the words of a Gadol – even accidentally – is a chillul HaShem and harms the chareidi camp trememdously.

  2. I live in Emanuel.

    Concerning the upcoming subpoena, will the Sephardi parents of the girls who attend the Beis Yaakov Chasidi in Emnauel also be subpoennaed? They amount to about 30% of the student body, not including the many families of mixed heritage.

    This is not an ethnic difference, it is philosophical.

    Shulamit Amichai, the mankal of the ministry of Education in 2007, is not religious, nor is attorney Mordechai Bass, who came from the Mevaker HaMedina (the Israeli equivalent of the Better Business Bureau) to investigate the situation here. He spent three days in Emanuel, speaking to a wide variety of people here. He found that there was NOT ONE person in Emanuel who said, “I wanted to come to the Chasidi school and was not accepted.” NOT ONE said, “I know someone who applied to this school and was not accepted.” He thus said, since there was no rejection, how can there be disctimmination? His conclusion was that the new school was based on religious differences and not on ethnic differences.
    There were at least seven Ashkenazi families who did not attend the Chasidi school when it first opened. Some were not interested philosophically, others has a wait and see attitude.

    The girls who attend the Beis Yacov Chasidi in Emanuel have their roots in the following countries: Iraq, Persia, Morocco, Kurdistan, Yemen, India, Egypt, The Old Yishuv here in Israel, Tunisia, Poland, Hungary, Russia, Germany. What makes this school different is its standards, in particular standards concerning tznius (length and tightness of dress), no makeup, no MP3s, exposure to media, etc. The parents who objected to the current standards of the city Beis Yakov either bussed their girls to Bnei Brak or tried to start another school. I have lived in Emanuel for eleven years, have six kids who have been and are still attending schools here. When we first came, there were three schools for boys and one for girls – the only school for girls was the Beis Yacov, which already had within in a split off Chabad School, which soon after moved to its own building. The original Beis Yacov was largely comprised of Chassidic families. The three boy’s schools were then and continue to be Chabad, Chassidic, and Sephardic. “Chassidic” does not mean “Ashkenazic”. Members of both communities marry each other.

    The demographics here changed. Chassidim were moving out, and the flavor the original Beis Yacov was becoming more modern. The formation of the Beis Yacov Chasidi was an effort by members of the original Chassidic population here to re-create the kind of Beis Yacov that they had a decade ago. It was a stricter school – in terms of dress, exposure to media, even to some aspects of Haredi culture that they feel is not for them as in Haredi “rock music”, choice of careers, etc – and certainly NOT of an “Ashkenazic” school! This was after a couple of years of outreach programs meant to encourage people to move the original Beis Yacov back towards its original narrower interpretation of the Israeli Haredi lifestyle. This outreach did not succeed, to the Chassidim formed their own school – in their minds, returning to the original school’s former style.

    One of the original founders of the Beis Yacov Chasidi, which was founded in 2007, was Rav Ba’adani, a gadol (very well respected Rabbinical authority) who happens to be Sephardic. Additionally, there were two families who had daughters in both the original Beis Yacov and the Beis Yacov Chasidi at the very same time, proving yet again that this was not an ethnic division. This is a dynamic, fluid society. There were girls who switched back to the original school and those who switched to the Chasidi school the following year. There is an excellent Chabad school, the original Beis Yaakov, plus dati leumi and charedi dati leumi (chardal) schools in other towns in the Shomron that offer excellent alternatives, and the new Beis Rachel and Leah, run by a wonderful principal and staff, offer yet another healthy alternative for students here.

    I love the variety here, some of which must be preserved in diverse educational institutions. Variety has been instrumental in the survival of the Jewish people, both nationally and individually.

    Because of its small size, Emanuel has been a nice place for people to get to know members of different kinds of communities more easily than in a large city perhaps. That makes this horrendous media fabrication all that more ironic – and painful.


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