Jul 16, 2018

role reversal of schnorrers and benefactors

The Jewish Press is reporting that a recent conference of North American jewish school principals held in Jerusalem dealt with finding ways to have the Israeli government help these North American Jewish Day Schools with tuition funding and economic support for Jewish children that cannot afford to pay the high tuition required there.

I am sure there will be a lot of discussions as to whether the Israeli government should or should not partially fund the school systems in the United States of America or other countries. if they decide to, it would be groundbreaking.

First of all, would the Israeli government get a say, or demand a say, in the educational content and curriculum of schools that take their money - can the Israeli government insist on the inclusion of Zionism, Israeli history, and modern Israeli politics, for example, in the school systems? If they do, will the schools still take the money?

Second, while Israeli schools are vastly subsidized by the government and therefore very cheap (with exception) for parents sending their children to Israeli schools, I don't know how much the Israeli government can send to North American schools and how much that will anger Israeli parents to see their tax money go to fund private schools abroad while they perhaps feel to be getting the short end of the stick back here in Israel with shorter school days, perhaps less (less than schools abroad, not less than what was taught here already) diversity in the curriculum, and with perhaps many other benefits or "pluses" in the school system abroad.

I don't know if it is a good idea or not, and I dont know if Israel has the money for it or not. I also dont know how it will actually affect the tuition and education in North America - will the kids really benefit from this or will the money go to funding higher salaries and whatnot, or even extracurricular activities, while the tuition is kept the same. Whatever the answers might be to those questions, I find it interesting that Israel used to be (and still is in many realms) the schnorrer and the Jews of North America (among others) used to be the benefactors, and those roles might very well be reversing...

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  1. It is nothing new - the Yeshiva in Milwaukee (WITS) got financial help from either the govt or the Jewish Agency back in the 80s. AFAIK, the only condition was that there had to be some recognition of Yom HaAtzmaut in the Yeshiva.

  2. They should start by requiring Hebrew.


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