Dec 22, 2009

Taking it out on the kid is wrong

There is a story that has ben simmering in Bet Shemesh for a few weeks now. A couple of weeks ago it even made the national scene with a half hour radio talk show dedicated to this situation - racism in the school, using the Bet Shemesh case as its main point of discussion. The local papers have also written about it a couple of times.

Basically a number of families tried to get their daughters into a certain Bais Yaakov school. The school refused, ostensibly because they are sfardi and this school is ashkenazy.

5 girls were left out of school while their parents fought.

4 of the girls ended up getting into a school, as the parents filed a complaint and the Ministry of Education forced the school to take them, as per the law. the fifth girl was out of luck as there was not a place for her, physically. Her fight continued.

the local school - in her neighborhood - being private could not be forced to accept her, so they went to another school and tried.
They then fought to get in to another Chinuch Atzmai school in another neighborhood, and ended up getting the support of Rav Shteinman who told the school to accept this families daughter, along with the law forcing the school to accept the girl.

The school and parents committee rallied against the girl, insisting she not be allowed in. The local Rav who is involved in the school called in the parents and accused them of being mosrim, as they had gone to the secular authorities and ratted them out, and that if they would be forced to take in their girl, they would have the girls excommunicate this daughter and make her life miserable.
The courts then forced the school to accept her, and the girls were forced to strike and refuse to go to class (I saw a blurb yesterday in Haaretz that the Court said the strike has to end and the girls have to go back to class).
  1. I don't know for sure the issue is racism against sfardim, though it might be. It also might be that this school is not the right place for this girl. Maybe she is not at the same level - educationally or socially/spiritually, and therefore they oppose taking her. Just because the fight has been branded as racism doesn't make it so (but it might be).
  2. I still don't understand why sfardim insist on going to ashkenazy schools. In a perfect world it should not make a difference. All the girls are the same anyway, and it really doesn't matter if one is sfardi and one is ashkenazy, and they should be accepted based on real criteria and not based on whether their grandparents came from Morocco or Poland. But the fact is the school put up a fight, for whatever reason. So why fight and insist on going there? Why not go to a different school? perhaps a sfardi school? Or find a different ashkenazy school that will be more accepting? I am not justifying the schools possibly racist discrimination, but why should the girl have to suffer just because the parents want to feel better about themselves as if they are ashkenazy (though I dont know why that makes a sfardi feel better). There are plenty of other schools, and this one is already not in their neighborhood, so I don't know why they did not just go find a different school.
  3. Once again we see that the gedolim are only listened to when convenient, and again it is by the most religious of groups in the area (not the more "modernishe" that always get accused of not listening to the gedolim). Rav Shteinman said to resolve the case and accept the girl, yet they still refused to do so.
  4. The response of the school, parents and rav seems inappropriate. if forced by the courts to accept the girl, just do it graciously. Why threaten? Why strike against the girl? Even if the family was wrong, and I am not saying they were nor am I saying the schools refusal was wrong, still, the girl did not do anything wrong to be deserving of excommunication and isolation. She did nothing wrong to deserve being shamed by the girls protesting against her (obviously they only did it because their parents told them to, and they were told by the rav and parents committee). Find a way to punish the parents if necessary, but to destroy the girl like that seems totally inappropriate and wrong.
I will also point out that while Bais Yaakov's and other haredi schools are notorious for using race as a factor in acceptance or refusal into their schools, they are not alone in this. Many schools do it - recently a Dati Leumi school in Petach Tikva made the national news in their refusal to accept some Ethiopian kids, for example.


  1. The New Nuremburg LawsDecember 22, 2009 2:49 PM

    "I still don't understand why sfardim insist on going to ashkenazy schools."


    They feel that that is the only way they have a chance to "fit in" in the mainstream Charedi society.

    It is also sad how those who have managed to get in change core elements of their sefardi minhagim as they integrate into Ashkenazi society.

    We have some Ashkenazy charedi rabbonim here in RBSA who have shown their anti-sefardi bias on several occasions.

    The sefardim should be proud of their mesora and stay far away from the warped ashkenazi charedi world.

  2. "Maybe she is not at the same level - educationally or socially/spiritually, and therefore they oppose taking her."

    You must mean that she is not on as low a level as the people who send their children to that school?

  3. lower, higher, doesnt matter. whichever it is. if it isnt appropriate because of educational level, she shouldnt be there

  4. Inyana D'Yoma -
    Check out the comparison made to the Sefardi/Ashkenazi racism, and the points you've made:,7340,L-3823472,00.html

  5. the chareidi world idealizes the past and the group, to the nth degree. they make such incredible efforts to preserve the groups, the customs, the texts, the symbols. this may be good, it may be bad, it may be a mixture of good and bad. but one of the clear outcomes of this obsession is the hatred or at least the pushing away of the other.

    if i were to advise the family, i might also advise to find something else for their daughter. not necessarily sefardi, but anywhere without this hatred. let them drown in their obsessions, but don't put your daughter there.

  6. Because we live in a democratic society and the school accepts public funds. If the school gets away with it the system will just continue. Someone has to take a stand. No one wanted the blacks in the Mississippi public schools either.

  7. Funny how it always turns out to be Sephardi children/families who are not on a high enough educational or religious level.

  8. Wow , way to not have the facts straight.

    Where do I begin?

    The girl is not from RBS A, she is from RBS B, meaning the correct place for her to go to school is RBS B. There was an internal fight in RBS B between a certain school and some families, and these 8 - not 5 - girls were unfortunatelt hit the hardest.

    It is not because the girl is Sefardi. There are tons of sefardim in the class. Moreover the local Rov very often pushes sefardim into schools (all of them, really - boys girls etc) and this time sided with the school. Not a racism issue.

    Rav Shteinman agreed to be someich on the local Rov and not to accept the girl from outside the "school district" and it was only when they threatened to go to secular courts - which is an Issur of arka'os and a chillul hashem - did the local Rov pass the ball back to Rav Shteinman.

    As far as I know, Rav Shteinman was never reapproached on behalf of the school. I am not sure why.

    No one has said anything about excommunicating the girl and making her life miserable. Perhaps thats what the parents have said, but to be honest, someone who runs to secular has no neemanus and would not hesitate to lie to benefit their case.

    The strike was a full school strike on Sunday. On Monday and Tuesday all the classes went back to school except for the first grade. They return tomorrow.

    Sefardim insist on going to Ashkenazi schools because they feel inferior. Why fight? Because they get on a power trip that we are good too and you stupid ashkenazim cant tell us what to do and where to go. We have the chilonim on our side.

    The parents of this girl come out of this looking really bad. They are entirely at fault for trying to force theil will on the will of an entire tzibbur, and the tzibbur need not worry about the fallout. This is the parents doing. This will not ruin the kid. The kid will be ruined much more by the parents that dont "play by the rules" and try to force their will on everyone else. Secular courts. Starting your kids schooling off on the wrong foot (an understatement actually). And on and on.

  9. thanks. it was actually a typo, but I didnt say rbs a at all. the local school I was referring to is in RBS B, and that school could not be forced because it is private. they then went to the school in RBS A. I even said it is not a local school for her..

    Yes, the parents are guilty, and I mentioned that. But the schools treatment of the girl is also wrong. Fight the parents, but as soon as the kid has to be taken in, they should not make her feel uncomfortable.

    So you say it is not because of her being sfardi. I mentioned that as a possibility. Please explain then what the reason of refusal is. I have neither seen in print nor heard any other reason offered. If the school feels she is not on the level or has another good reason, why have they not defended their refusal by saying the reason?

  10. I fixed the mistake. thanks for catching it

  11. Rafi the comment regarding Ethiopians and the DL is unfair.
    Ehiopians aren't given the option of secula schhols, as they require a Rabbanut conversion. Chareidi (including Shas who pushed for the Falshmura aliya) don't take their kids, so the whole brunt of absorbing kids who come from an entirely different world entirely has fallen on the Mamads, who in turn have to compete with private DL and non-Chareidi but Chareidi run private schools.
    How can you compare that to a system that discriminates based on what country the girl's grandparents came from?

  12. Mul - I hear you. I was not aware that that is how it came to be. it still begs the question why they reject them. Just because they are the only schools that can take them, when a policy is instituted, like the publicized recent case, to not accept the kids, it still seems the same despite what you wrote (though in that case a friend of mine from Petach Tikva told me that the schools were really justified because the kids came from a background of no education and problems and really knew nothing, so they were on a far lower level)

  13. Rafi, it's the same thing. The Ethiopians in PT are olim, and if their religious/educational level was too low for the private schools it was too low for the mamad schools also. Would they deny admission to American olim in the same situation? Highly doubtful. Certainly not to the point that it got to.
    Anonymous: You say the reason they were not admitted was not because they are sefardim. How many of the original 8 girls were ashkenazi and how many were sefardi?

  14. Rafi,
    First I think it is patently absurd to say that this Rav would go against what R Steinman has said. I am not sure whether this is based on some hearsay on your part or reliance on the parents, but I would check this particular detail quite well before being Motzi Laaz.
    Second, I think that all of us would either self-segregate ourselves from certain schools we knew would not take us, or would try hard to get our kids into some school, but probably ultimately accept the fact that it didn't work out and try something else. Involving the Misrad HaChinuch is quite a bold step.
    I often say that most Americans seem not to realize the historical relationship between secular and religious here in Eretz Yisrael. The Ashkenazi secular establishment literally fought tooth and nail to eradicate religious education, and to force all of the Sephardi immigrants into secular schools. The Charedim, therefore, don't view the Zionist establishment as much different than the Polish (I think?) one that tried to force secular studies into Volozhin, resulting in the closing of that Yeshiva. Yes, we are all Jews here, and we should all get along, but unfortunately the Zionist establishment does not seem to view things that way. For those of you of a more DL propensity, picture what happened in Amona and in Gush Katif. This is the face of the establishment. Do you want these people dictating the educational standards for your children at any level?

  15. you are now strengthening my point though that was not your intention.
    As Americans, we were happy to have anyone who wanted to have a religious education. anybody who wanted, pretty much, was accepted. Obviously within limits, but overall the statement is true. The schools were happy to get anybody who wanted to get into the lifestyle pretty much.

    what you describe is correct about the background. but that should mean the haredi schools should be overjoyed to get anybody who wants to be part of the culture and reject the state run schools. yet the haredi schools reject them and fight them.

    BTW, you still didnt answer the question. If it wasn't racism (and I still dont know that it was), why did the school refuse so vehemently to accept her? What is the schools reason for the refusal?

  16. Do you really think that the school should publicize all the shmutz that they find out about each family that they dont accept? Isnt that Lashon Hara? The Rov, who normally pushes sfardim into schools, agreed with the schools conclusion not to accept the kid.

    Moreover, the very fact that this family went to the secular press and (threatened to go to) secular courts - and in the process make a huge chillul hashem is reason enough not to accept the kid. That ALONE is enough of a reason why this family is not mat'im for a chareidi school.

    A parent who is willing to go this far to make sure their kid gets into the school of their choice, against the schools wishes, ostracizing their own kid in the process shows that they are not normal. That is also enough of a reason for me.

    This girl will not have friends that will go to her house. I know I would not send my kid to their house. I dont trust them at all. Not their kashrus. Not their kav hachinuch. Nothing. Keep in mind that I am an American. Something tells me that the Israelis in the school also wont be developing close friendships with this kid.

    These parents are ruining their kids school career. She can be traumatized for a long time because of this.

    An additional point - this is speculative - you claim that the rumors are that the Rov went against Rav Shteinman. Now, I am assuming you were not at any meeting with the Rov, nor did you talk to anyone on the schools side of the issue. Hence, I would think that your information comes from the parents side, or from secular press which probably spoke only to the parents side (atleast regarding this issue). Chas V'Shalom that the Rov would go against the wishes of Rav Shteinman. Motze la'az. And who was motzi this la'az? Was it this wonderful family that did not get accepted? If so, that also is enough of a reason not to accept her - for they publicly defame the local Rov with lies, and for no benefit other than their own personal gain.

    So we are clearly not dealing with your average run of the nill sefardi here. These people are nuts and out of control. On a crusade against the school and anyone who sides with them.

    Is that enough simanim for you to prove that this family is not mat'im?

  17. a. I dont need proof. I myself said I dont know that it is racism. I suggested alternative possibilities, but was wondering why nothing was said.
    b. no shmutz needs to be revealed. they could give a very general reason that would be vague enough but specific enough and leave it at vehamyven yavin.
    c. the fact/rumor of Rav Shteinman saying the school should accept the parents was originally claimed by the parents, as far as I know, and later admitted to by the principal. I remember reading it in the papers and was told it was also mentioned on the radio (I did not hear the program myself)
    d. if the kid and family is not matim, that is fine. say so. say why, without disparaging them as you say. Schools reject kids all the time all around the worl because the kid or family is not appropriate for the school. Usually the school says so, and even says why. I have no problem with it not being racism. I didnt accuse them of racism. I suggested an alternative. Just wondering why they did not state the reason.
    e. yes, they went to the secular press and ministry. I am not defending them, just playing devils advocate - parents do whatever they can when they feel they are up against a wall. I dont know why they insisted on sending to a school, schools actually, that didnt want them. I dont know why they did not instead look for a school that was willing to take them without a fight. But regardless of that, and yes the parents are to blame for that, and I said so, they could easily have felt their backs to the wall, the kid hadnt been in school for months already, and this was a last resoirt. I am aware of other cases that parents, heiishe parents in similar situations where a kid was refused to a regular Bais Yaakov, also used the rule of the MoE that a neighborhood school (including Chinuch Atzmai) has to accept anybody from the community in order to get their respective kids in. Parents do that when their backs are against the wall and maybe they dont agree with the reasons for their being rejected. Again, I am not justifying it, but it does happen.

    you write your response as if you are fighting with me that I think it is racism and you know the real reason. I never claimed racism. The press did. I suggested that it likely might not be, and there might be very valid reasons for it, and I wondered why the reasons were not publicized (at least in general terms) when it became a fight. They can't give the reason,. but they can publicly threaten all sorts of nastiness?

    The only thing open is the issue with Rav Shteinman. I only know what I heard, and read, and you did not claim otherwise other than asking why he would go against Rav Shteinman and therefore he obviously did not. I dont know why he would. Again, the minahelet was quoted as admitting that Rav Shteinman told them to take the girl in. More than that I dont know. Perhaps she was misquoted. Perhaps he recanted. Perhaps it was made up. You tell me. You are saying ti didn't happen. So explain to me what Rav Shteinman said.
    Other than that last point, we pretty much agree.

  18. "Do you really think that the school should publicize all the shmutz that they find out about each family that they dont accept? Isnt that Lashon Hara?"

    Real shmutz or made up Charedi shmutz?

    I recall a few years ago when the reps of a certain organization were spreading that a competing organization didn't have Da'as Torah. This motzei shem ra was done to garner financial support. There was a "mainstream" charedi organization making up things to besmirch another.

    Certain Charedi rabbonim tell their flocks to boycott tzedaka organizations when it comes to giving (they're treif,etc) but give full encouragement to the so called treif assistance.

    Selective cherem to serve thier needs.

    Schools do this all of the time to justify their racist policies as well.

  19. "d. if the kid and family is not matim, that is fine. say so. say why, without disparaging them as you say. Schools reject kids all the time all around the worl because the kid or family is not appropriate for the school. Usually the school says so, and even says why."

    Not always. I've heard stories where parents apply to a school for their kid and the school doesn't give them any answer at all. The parents call, the mazkirah says they have to speak to the menahel, but he's in a meeting. They call again, he's out of town. They call again, he's sitting shiva. They call again, he's in another meeting. They don't want to tell the parent no because they don't want to get into the whys of that no. So they just avoid the confrontation altogether and let the parents draw their own conclusions. So the parents conclude it must be because we're sfardi, because the father wore a coloured shirt, because the mother's tichel was pushed too far back, because the kid's kippah was too small.

    Why, you asked, don't they just choose a different school? You get your heart set on a school you think is best for your kid, and then see how you like being told to find another one, but without any understanding of why the one you chose won't take your kid.

    What if this was the US and the secret reason why they wouldn't take a kid was because he was Black? The parents would flare up and say, "You can't do this to me!" and bring out the arsenal of weapons - press, NAACP, ACLU, courts, etc.

    Similarly here in Israel, we all know that sometimes you have to play their game to get into the school you want. They'll tell you no, but if you have the right protexia, you can push and they'll take you. Well what if you don't have the right protexia? So you threaten to go to the press, the authorities, R' Shteinman, the president, whatever it takes to get your kid in school.

    It's possible these parents would not normally resort to such actions as going to secular courts, but if they (correctly or incorrectly) concluded it was because they were Sfardi, well that's an insult they won't take lying down. I can see that being so infuriating it would make them do things they normally wouldn't, such as going to the secular courts. They're going to challenge this injustice in any way they can.

    In short, I have no idea what really happened.

  20. Saab - I understand the idea of being non-confrontational. But that works when the parent tries to call and say why did you not accept my kid, so they try to avoid answering. That excuse does not work when the story already makes the local press and national media, gets the MoE involved, and when the vaad horim makes the students go on strike to protest her forced acceptance. By then they are way past the non-confrontational stage.

  21. A) The schools often have reasons not to accept certain kids to their schools. They cant give out information since that often reveals who told the schools the info - which neighbor, a co-worker etc.

    B) The school did say that the kid is not mat'im and wanted to leave it at that.

    C) Again, the parents have no neemanus on what RAYLS said. Do you think that the school was protesting against RAYLS? Does that make sense to you.

    D) I dont know why they did not state the reason, though I imagine it has to do with a) not wanting to get into a fight about a detail; b) sometimes there is just a feeling from a few incidents / issues, and talking about it lends it self to "pikpuk" over the individual issues, and ignores the "sum of the parts" ; c) not wanting the sources leaked or found out.

    E) Even so, there are dinim and halachos. Someone who blatanly goes against halacha here - in order to get a chareidi chinuch - is someone who is not mat'im for this school.

    -) I did not mean to come against you. I dont even know you. I was just saying that your information was incorrect

    --) From what I understood RAYLS told both sides they are right - presumably another case of "how you ask the question" They were supposed to go back to him and I did not hear that they did. Dont know about that

    ---) I dont think its fair to say that they "publicly threatened all sorts of nastiness" - I live here and have a kid in the school and have not heard or seen any such proclamations.

  22. Not to nitpick but why is "because the mother's tichel was pushed too far back" not a good reason?

    I wouldnt want my girl in a class where the mother doesnt cover her hair properly?

  23. "Well what if you don't have the right protexia? So you threaten to go to the press, the authorities, R' Shteinman, the president, whatever it takes to get your kid in school"

    Rav Shteinman yes. The rest no - not if it constitutes an issur and is a chillul hashem.

  24. Anonymous 11:42, what are you talking about? There has been a public religious schools system since the state was established? The rabbanut has been in charge of marriage and divorce since the state was established. Just because you were brainwashed by charedi lies doesn't make them true.

    And comparing the Jewish state's government to the Polish who were only too happy to see Jews slaughtered in state sanctioned pogroms and the Shoah itself is the ultimate loshon hara (just like the spies in the Torah). You should be ashamed of yourself.

  25. Ok, let's have a little logic- you don't trust this family's kashrut because they really want her to go to a particular charedi school? Does that make any sense? You don't agree with their "kav hachinuch" because they want her to to be educated by the same teachers as your daughters? So the teachers are good enough for your daughters but not theirs?

    Wow, the only chillul hashem here is the school's behavior and your statements.

  26. And not to nitpick, but refusing to send your daughter to school with a girl whose mother pushes her tichel too far back will not get you any closer to olam haba. In fact, this blatant example of sinat chinam will probably push you much farther back.

    Rafi, this is a perfect example of what makes the charedi community so infuriating. The complete disregard for bein adam l'chaveiro, the sinat chinam in the name of making sure everyone has every strand of hair covered (ie: everything on the outside must look right, but the inside can be garbage).

    You seem not to have succumbed to this, but your neighbors don't seem to be so lucky.

  27. Earn money from home!December 23, 2009 11:41 AM

    Hey Rafi, does this school get public funds? Thanks.

  28. of course. that is the only reason they could force them via the MoE to accept the girl

  29. Ahavas Yisroel..Klal GADOLDecember 23, 2009 12:29 PM



    Why do Charedim bemoan that moshiach isn't here then do everything they can to keep him away?

    Why is tehillim,fasting,more tzniyus,mehadrin kashrus the response to tragedy rather than stregthening bein adom l'chaveiro.

    All HKB''H wants is a little love and respect among His children.

  30. Abbi - you seem to be able to twist any words that I say around to make it out that I stand for sinas chinam. Congratulations. Youre a real star.

    I will reply to you, but only if you discuss my arguements (desiring a standard of tzniyus for my kids school, and trusting the kashrus and the kav hachinuch of someone who willing and publicly defies the halachos of chilul hashem).

    Until you are able to coherently express why these desires are so infuriation, I will simply accuse you of chareidi bashing and sinas chinam against chareidim.

    While you are at it, please explain why this is an example of "complete" disregard for bein asam l'chaveiro. Do you think that a woman whose hair is not covered properly shows a community's "comeplete" disregard for bein adam l'makom? Or is there room to overlook a disagreement in the name of something else?

  31. Not to nitpick: I was just giving an example of where parents might reach their own conclusions since the school never gave them a reason. I wasn't commenting on that example per se. Now you started a whole new tirade.

    Abbi and Ahavas: First thing I'll say is I agree with you about the importance of bein adam l'chavero. But it's interesting that you're on the soapbox about that while in the same sentence accusing the entire charedi community of violating it. True there are some, I'll say even many who do, but painting the entire community with that brush is decidedly anti bein adam l'chavero.

    By the way, Ahavas, it's not ALL He wants. I think tzniyus and kashrus are on His list too.

  32. Ahavas Yisrael...Klal GADOLDecember 23, 2009 1:42 PM


    As a member of the Charedi world I feel that I can comment. You are correct in saying that it isn't the entire Charedi world but yes as an establishment it is. There is no question that a lack of tolerance exists in the Charedi world at all levels.

    While such intolerance can be found among the DL/MO/Chardal as well as an establishment it is not the same.

    Case in point: many DL/MO/Chardal generously support Charedi run institutions. Charedi institutions put their posters, flyers, etc in DL shuls, buildings and schools. You will very hard pressed to find the literature of DL/MO/Chardal organizations in a Charedi area. Not because of tzniyus, etc. Just because they are DL.

    In our own wonderful world of RBSA we see this on a regular basis. Charedi PR is all over. yet when I daven in certain shuls or walk my kid to gan on certain streets all you might see of the other PR is torn or ripped corners.

    By and large there is much more tolerance in the non Charedi world and this can't be argued.

    A parent in a "mixed" area who sends their kid to a more charedi school will not be shunned by neighbors but G-d Forbid if you send your child to a school that isn't "on the list".

    We in the CFharedi world could learn from our fellow Jews how to love and be more tolerant. perhaps it will be a mirror effect.

  33. "While you are at it, please explain why this is an example of "complete" disregard for bein asam l'chaveiro. Do you think that a woman whose hair is not covered properly shows a community's "comeplete" disregard for bein adam l'makom? Or is there room to overlook a disagreement in the name of something else?"

    Since there are many different pskei halacha regarding haircovering, I would say a woman who doesn't completely cover her hair is absolutely NOT completely disregarding bein adam l'makom. She is covering her hair according to the psak halacha she got from her rebbe. Therefore, shunning her and her daughter and not being dan l'kav schut (speaking of "kav hachinuch") is a blatant violation of bein adam l'chaveiro. But, if you don't believe there are multiple interpretations of halacha (clearly you don't) than of course, a mother who covers her hair slightly differently from you is committing an issur d'oreita in your eyes and should be put in cherem (or at least very very far away from your children). A perfect example of complete disregard of bein adam l'chavero.

    I am not twisting your words and I responded to exactly what you wrote and the spirit behind it. I wish you were an anomaly or a fringe element of the charedi community. Sadly, as Ahavas Yisrael corroborates, that is not the case. Until you open your eyes and realize how you're obsessing about the wrong mitzvot, we'll just have to wait that much longer for geula.

    Wanna Saab- I truly wish your words were true. But that is just not the case and I agree with Ahavas Yisrael. When ahavat yisrael really becomes a chiyuv in the charedi community, I think we'll be a lot closer to bringing the moshiach than we are now.

  34. RAFI:

    "Maybe she is not at the same level - educationally or socially/spiritually, and therefore they oppose taking her. Just "

    bullony. what does it mean that the girl is not spiritually up to to par? whatever that means, let the school work a little and get her there.

    i don't understand how this is still an issue. the schools all take state money. the state should make it clear: either end the discrimination or suffer stiff fines. repeat offenders lose all funding permanently. period.

    "I still don't understand why sfardim insist on going to ashkenazy schools."

    that's nobody's business except for the parents'

    and 50 years ago would you have wondered why black parents insist on sending their kids to white schools?

  35. LOZ - I knew when I wrote that that it was not clear. That is not what I meant. I did not mean they shouldnt. I meant why fight to get in to a school that so badly doesnt want you? This school wasnt even the first choice for them. It is not like they always dreamed of being able to send to this school. They chose it because they couldnt get in to the other one, it is "frummie enough", it has a certain reputation. but they dont want her. so try to send the kid somehwere else. All the schools they tried to send to were ashkenaz. Not a single one was sfard. I dont care about mixing - I believe there is no difference between teh ashkenaz kids and the sfardi kids. I see them learning together and there are just as many good sfard as ashkenazy kids and just as many poor students among the ashkenazim as among the sfardim. there is no difference. Schools should not be based on ashkenaz or sfard.
    but when a school vehemently refuses to accept, and the only reason you are trying is because it is ashkenaz, it does make me wonder what you have against the sfardi schools

  36. ABBI - "I would say a woman who doesn't completely cover her hair is absolutely NOT completely disregarding bein adam l'makom"

    Please name some accepted poskim that the proper hanhaga is to expose hair.

    I have a right to insist on a lechatchila approach to tznius which is a core issue for me, as it is for the entire chareidi world.

    ABBI - "a mother who covers her hair slightly differently from you is committing an issur d'oreita in your eyes and should be put in cherem "

    A) Issurei Derabanan are also assur.
    B) Did I mention a cherem against her or her family? I simply said I wouldnt want my daughter in a school with them? I feel they would be a negative influence in the area of Tznius.

    I am not sure why you equate ahavaas yisroel with being in the same school. I will reverse the tide. Assuming you could get into a Satmar school, would you send your child there? Why or why not? I would imagine that you wouldnt. Is it because you feel they are different, although you love them dearly? Thats why I wouldnt send to Satmar. Thats why I wouldnt send to MO or DL either.

  37. The school in question is a local school who gets kids from one select area of RBSA. Why do they HAVE to accept someone from outside their district just because that family wants to get in?

  38. even though it is a local school, and arent all schools local to any given area, they take funding from the government (they are chinuch atzmai) and are therefore obligated by MoE rules.
    One of those rules is that you have to accept any kid from the area that applies. I assume there are certain guidelines - a haredi school would not have to take a hioloni kid, I imagine, but in general as long as they can show they are somehow appropriate for the school they have to be accepted.

    The girl in question lives in an area where there is no such school - only a private school not bound by those rules. I dont know how the MoE decides things in such cases. Perhaps it is a range of kilometers form where she lives. The school in the Kirya was forced to take 4 other girls and was then full. I guess the next closest apprpriate school was this one. Or maybe it was within range and they decided on this one.

    you take money, you gotta follow the rules. Just because most of the time in the haredi community people will not enforce such a rule because it means going out of the system, sometimes it happens.

  39. Commentator Abbi: it's me, the brainwashed one
    I have lived here for almost 2 decades. I encourage you: SPEAK with Israelis, secular and religious, and find out the history. If you have, I find your post to be a bit naive.
    You say: there has always been religious education
    Imagine the following situation, which was fairly common: Sephardim arrive in the 50s or 60s and they are settled in some Moshav or some development town. The Zionists decide there will be only one school there, a secular one. (In many cases, they only opened a technical school in these Moshavim, effectively preventing the people from gaining access to university: again SPEAK to people, find out). Now, you can't expect Joe Sephardi to jump into his car and bus his kids around, can you. He has nothing. He is stuck.
    (As an aside, if you think Haredim don't like Sefardim, you should see the old-time Ashkenazi secular establishment types! Ever heard of the Black Panthers in Israel? How many Sephardim were represented in Mapai?)
    I encourage you to watch, again and again, the videos of Amona. Watch an unarmed teenager having his skull smashed in by a Jewish policeman on a horse with a wooden club. Really: go watch it. Then watch the politicians defend the policeman, and see how many of them have been charged with anything. Do you find it hard to believe that they have a deep-rooted hatred for religion and religious people. Is it so hard for you to fathom that they would prevent religious education from immigrants they viewed as inferior.
    When the Ministry of Education speaks about a "core curriculum", this is why the Haredim so staunchly oppose it. Would you trust one of those abusive policemen with your well-being? Should we entrust our spiritual well-being to the secular establishment?

  40. I have learned the halachot of kisui ROSH (not se'ar, ROSH) myself and there are plenty of MO poskim who hold that the halacha is covering the crown of the head, not the hair, because they don't consider hair to be ervah (which is why little girls and unmarried women aren't required to cover their hair, like the Rambam says) and that covering the head is also a symbol of marriage, again, nothing to do with hair being ervah. Again, nothing you would hold by.

    I have lived here for one decade and am well aware of the politics at the beginning of the state. However, to make a statement that the secular would constantly pushing out the religious is simply absurd when there has always existed a state religious school system and the religious run marriage and divorce. Use a little sechel.

    If you don't want a core curriculum, don't take state money. It's that simple. If you hate the government, stop taking their money Right, that government who despises the religious yet still supports kollelim and charedi schools, and still hands out child support payments to large charedi families. Hmm, I wonder why the secular might find it disturbing that charedim take loads of money but do almost nothing to support the state economically and don't serve in the army... Really a hard kashe!

    And no I would never send my daughter or son to a Satmar school because that isn't my community. This girl and her family are charedi, from what i've heard. She's not a chiloni or even a DL who has no relation to your community. Your analogy makes no sense.

  41. tichel pushed too far back - I thought maybe that meant it just slipped a few centimeters beyond where she'd like it, yet in true form the neighbors ratted on her when they saw her that way as she reached up to open the garbage contraption and made it into a major big deal like she disregards tznius.

    but Anon's approach - excluding people who might ever-so-slightly affect your children negatively - is classic charedi schooling nowadays. never mind how it got to be that way, but those of us who consider ourselves charedi but also like open-mindedness, realize that in the long run such attitudes harm our chilren's mitzvos and midos in other ways.

    you have to choose one approach or the other. for now the charedi approach is to keep raising the walls, and whoever is out, is out.


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