Thursday, December 18, 2008

Chinuch Atzmai Situation

I've been debating on and off whether to write this post or not.

I would like to state first that I don't know the entire story- as I don't live in this neighborhood- and I have tried to verify if this is true- most sources whom I've talked to have said that it is true.

The only news that reported it was Yeshiva World News- but that makes sense, as it is a problem for the frum Jewish community.

I would also like to remind my readers that I am newly married- I don't have children yet. If I did, I wouldn't want them to be treated like this. I was appalled and shocked when I read the first article, and the second only escalated my fears on how my children might be treated if I raise them in Israel. I spoke to one of my own rabbanim, who said that although it is wrong, the situation should clear itself up, and my children would probably not experience what a lawyer-friend of mine called, "a clear example of segregation and discrimination in today's times."

Such an action could probably lead to people suing one another in the US. A quote from the articles illustrates the 'excuses' given for the segregation.

In addition, the parents of the American girls also signed a document to accept the current realities, namely the separate classes, and now, in the middle of the year, undoing such a reality is not advisable, considering it takes weeks and weeks of intensive work to set up the classes. At present, there are four parallel classes so such a move would impact many many girls.

In short, the separation of the Americans was in no way intended as a punishment, but as a respectable solution to the fact that the children have differences, have difficulty speaking with Israeli girls, and fit together better than attempted integration at this time. We want the girls in the school, and in time, they will acclimate to Eretz Yisrael. The school placed their best teacher in the American class, not wishing to compromise their education in anyway. One can easily understand when there are 10 girls in a classroom who naturally speak English, their native tongue; it does result in a pedagogic and social problem in the classroom. We spoke with rabbonim, experienced professionals and many experts before making a decision as to addressing the social & language gap.

Here are the articles. I'm going to let my readers decide for themselves.
This is the first article printed.
This was the second, and the third. This was the school, and Chinuch Atzmai's response in the fourth- here.

One thing is for sure- as an American planning to stay here in Israel- this shocked me, and made me worry for the future. I hope this will be resolved by the talented rabbaim working on this case- like R' Yitzchak Berkowitz, Rav of Sanhedria Murchevet.

1 comment:

Jameel @ The Muqata said...

Reports from Yechiel Spira on YWN are generally reliable and accurate.

He's been in the news service for years, starting with the Shomron News Service, which I was often a contributor (being on the scene so many times).