Thursday, June 3, 2010

Integration in Israel Part Two

After having posted about the integration issues that Americans who have chosen to live in Israel face regarding their kids, two things happened to me.

One, I re-evaluated my choice for my daughters' first gan several times. I originally had chosen a gan that I thought would be wonderful for her, if not the total, absolute best, because that was what was out there that I thought suited her and our lifestyles.

Then someone else suggested a gan that would probably be the total absolute best gan out there. Problem is, that the gan is not a religious gan, but rather a gan to which religious people send their children. (ie, it's not a Bais Yaakov, but rather an Iriyah gan, to which those who are Dati Leumi or Mizrachi send their children, with a few Charedim thrown in the mix.)

As I investigated more into this gan, I found that it would probably be a wonderful place for my daughter, but for one problem: future Bais Yaakov schools would probably ask why I had sent her there, due to the fact that it is not a Bais Yaakov gan. (There were other small problems as well, like logistics and such.)

And so, I nixed that idea, and went back to my first opinion.

Now the question that still lingers in my mind: was I right to make that decision? If I wasn't afraid of public opinion, would I have sent her there? She probably would have an awesome year there, and would grow and gain in ways that my first choice gan would not be able to give her.

I can't fight the system on my own- to explain to a Bais Yaakov, which already looks down on me for being American, and for working at a job that not many mothers work at, why I sent my daughter to a gan that's not Bais Yaakov- would be far too hard for me to handle.

Yet I still wonder- should I have taken the risk, for my daughter's education's sake?

Third part coming soon….


s said...

I would put forth the idea that you do not compromise when it comes to your children. ever. period.
To worry about an if that may never become relevant so much that it restricts your actions is not good, H'shem would want you to be more trusting of Him.
Do what is good and it will be good.

tesyaa said...

This is an excellent post. I like the way you're honestly confronting the internal conflict you feel. Even just confronting your feelings make you a better parent, and a better person.

Anonymous said...

There is surely an inherent value in sending NBD to a gan which includes a wide cross-section of children from observant families; isn't that more repreentative of the real Israel?
Its a tough question, but although sometimes compromise appears to be necessry, it tends not to lead to the best results; as you have recognised.

daughtersintheparsha said...

I am all for choosing a school that is best for your daughter- but you will have to be strong to deal with the ridiculous standards that rule Israeli school politics- and if you are living in Israel permanently, you have to decide which "camp" you want to belong to. The only way to avoid that is to live in mini-america, a.k.a. beit shemesh.
good luck

anne said...

what's so bad about public dati schools?

Why is bais Yaakov your first choice for a school?