July 17, 2017 1:41 am at 1:41 am #1318441
This was in the Lakewood Voice.
Shocking and sad.
It speaks for itself.July 17, 2017 2:27 am at 2:27 am #1318451
If there are no specifics how can anyone render an opinion?July 17, 2017 6:26 am at 6:26 am #1318464
It seems that we finally agree on something!
Btw, the letter explicitly state that the story occurred in Lakewood.
Nor does it say what the background is, why the other parents would want their daughter is associating with her. Why is it assumed that they were wrong?July 17, 2017 8:33 am at 8:33 am #1318478
“If there are no specifics how can anyone render an opinion?”
Im so confused. Are we talking about the same letter? The letter posted was full of specifics. Granted some were eliminated, some were changed but the story as told is quite specific. (though not necessarily true)
“Nor does it say what the background is, why the other parents would want their daughter is associating with her.”
It does: “due to her unfavorable scholastic achievements” (at the least it certainly is strongly implied)
” Why is it assumed that they were wrong?”
I think to most people having “unfavorable scholastic achievements” is not worthy of death.July 17, 2017 9:11 am at 9:11 am #1318503
There is a gargantuan difference between a group of parents asking the school to keep close watch of a girl, and threatening to pull their kids if she attends. And for a school to respond as they did is equally astounding. I can’t see how that wouldn’t be obvious to anyone who reads this.July 17, 2017 9:17 am at 9:17 am #1318505
Granted some were eliminated
We can’t know how important those eliminated facts are without hearing them.
It does: “due to her unfavorable scholastic achievements” (at the least it certainly is strongly implied)
That was said in a different context, and I don’t agree that it’s logical to apply it to the other context.July 17, 2017 9:42 am at 9:42 am #1318542
I would say this conversation sounds a lot like getting stuck in the details and missing a very important pointJuly 17, 2017 10:05 am at 10:05 am #1318584
There is very little that a high school age girl could do that would justify revoking acceptance from school on the first day.July 17, 2017 10:22 am at 10:22 am #1318598
I agree with M29.The point is being missed. We have a school making a decision and parents calling in with an ulitimatum and the suffering which results. According to the famous story of The Mir Mashgiach, Harav Yerucham ztl(not checked) who said that a person may only be expelled from the Yeshiva if it was clear that he will turn other boys away from Yiddishkeit. And the Manchester Rosh Yeshiva ztl is supposed to have paskened that even upto 10% of less frum applicants can be accepted in a frum school. Nobody mentioned scholastic achievements, if that would have been the case the Manchester Rosh himself would never have got into school or Yeshiva! He got to where he was by sheer Hasmodoh!! (this is well known in Manchester).
What has happened to us? Why are we such religious snobs?July 17, 2017 10:38 am at 10:38 am #1318638
This article speaks volumes about what our schools have become. It is always disturbing to hear these stories, and they are unfortunately not rare. However, as long as yeshivos consider themselves competitors in a market, and not a public service, the arrangement for such tragedies is guaranteed.
Just few years ago, Reb Shlomo Yehuda Rechnitz addressed this in public. It caused a furor. How could anyone dare to challenge the status quo of how yeshivos maintain quality? But he got a pass, because he has money. You or I would be expelled from every beis hamedrash and shul, and our kids from their respective yeshivos. But truth hurts. The problem is not a fabrication, and there are live victims all the time.
Denying fact is plainly foolish, and I would assume that most people who are proud of their intellect will not do that. I do suggest that many are the victims of “spin”, quite similar to the pattern of the secular mainstream media. Words that sound good are used to obfuscate truth. The child that is no longer here cannot be restored to life and a school. Or to quote Hillary, “What difference, at this point, does it make?” Perhaps, if we examined the issues that enable this to happen, we can learn something about prevention. But it is not about an individual or a particular school. It is about a system.
So I ask the following pointed questions:
Does any yeshiva feel any sense of responsibility to insure that every Jewish child receive a Jewish education?
How was the calculation of the child’s emotional reaction to expulsion or rejection made? Was any outside professional (mental health professional or Rav) consulted?
Since when do other parents become baalei batim over a school?
Why is anyone playing the game of choosing one child over another?
Does anyone really know who is the better child, or is there a game of Ruach Hakodesh being played by amateurs?
Is the role of our yeshivos academic excellence or is it raising a Jewish child to live a Torah life? If the latter, what is the point of competition?
We know what the real answers should be, but we also know what they are. These questions go to the core issues. Sadly, the answers speak to the kavod and reputation of the institution without prioritizing the talmid. Such has evolved into today’s yeshivos. And the tragedy preceded the suicide by many years. Or maybe we should refer to this loss as a murder?
Before anyone wishes to bash me for daring to utter such things, please review the growing number of seforim on chinuch habonim, where Gedolei Yisroel made these points. I could relate countless stories of situations in which Gedolei Yisroel prohibited this practice of selectivity, and were moseir nefesh to prevent rejection. The viral video clip of Rav Shteinman shlit”a referring to this selectivity as גאוה, is just one example.
The Gemora (Nedarim 81a) tells us הזהרו בבני עניים שמהם תצא תורה. Be careful with the children of the poor because Torah will come from them. Simple pshat would be a warning to us to resist our tendency to predict where Torah will be found. Do we really believe the A student will fare better than the poorer performer with motivation?
This awful story with a tragic ending is not about Lakewood. Nor is it about a girls school. It is about every yeshiva, girls or boys, in E”Y and America. And the horrible endings vary as well. But there is blood, and the responsible parties all consider themselves innocent, even tzaddikim.
It is rare that a child is a true rodeif. Rather, the menahel that throws the kid to the streets is. Our world is upside down, and the beneficiary is the chevra kadisha. How many more levayos will occur before someone wakes up?July 17, 2017 10:51 am at 10:51 am #1318680
The story speaks for itself. The “need for details” smacks of voyeurism and an almost deliberate attempt to miss the point of the letter.
The bottom line is. Do you know someone like the person depicted in the letter, male or female? Do you make believe they dont exist or do you try and reach out to them with a smile, a good morning, a hello and if able an invite? Do you treat the “yaffas” of the world, their parents and siblings like lepers to the point that you ask that be sent out of the machne so to speak, like a metzora? Thats the message the letter writer is trying to make. Wake up and smell the coffee. If you did this to Yaffa, ask for mechila and prove you mean it by not kicking the next yaffa to the curb.July 17, 2017 10:51 am at 10:51 am #1318677
This isnt Gemara it isnt neccesary to overanalyze the letter.
The letter is prety straight forward
It starts off why a young girl who couldnt get into schools (it gives the reason “due to her unfavorable scholastic achievements”)
she was then accepted
Other student’s parents complained that she was accepted.
she was rejected
and ultimately died. (the implication is suicide though this sint explicit either)
Is it possible that the real reason she was rejected is she showed up with a gun the first day and started shooting? Sure! however that isnt what the letter says
The letter is pretty straightforward. Like M29 points out. dont get caught up in the details. The gist of the story is in the letter.
“We can’t know how important those eliminated facts are without hearing them.”
so put that in as a caveat. :
Assuming the story is true, and assuming there isnt some gross detail that would drastically change the story then …July 17, 2017 11:47 am at 11:47 am #1318718
The unfortunate reality is that this whole school situation in Lakewood is completely unacceptable if this would be an out of town school then every child would be accepted and appreciated, its time to get out of Lakewood it has gotten way too big and out of control. The only way to get into a Lakewood school is either be extremely yeshivish or extremely rich otherwise your children dodnt deserve to get a Jewish education because ur not learning full time until you 95.July 17, 2017 11:54 am at 11:54 am #1318800
Is there any situation in which such behavior would be acceptable and appropriate?
Of course I know nothing about this incident and if there is any correlation between this alleged incident and what happened afterward to this girl.
But is there any line that this girl would cross that it would be justified for parents to put their foot down?July 17, 2017 12:09 pm at 12:09 pm #1318804
It is not proper to bash school principals until you yourself are a principal in a similar situation.July 17, 2017 12:10 pm at 12:10 pm #1318802
What does “unfavorable scholastic achievements” mean? Did she get poor grades? If so, I don’t see why other parents should care. However, her parents should have explained to her that she would not succeed in a school that demands scholastic excellence and looked for a less demanding school. What do you want? That she should be given good grades just to make her feel better? I went to public schools in NYC. I was accepted into a “specialized” HS but only received middling grades there. I accepted the fact that while I was not exactly the tail of a lion I was far from the head. For this I thank my father z”l who told me at a very young age that no matter how good you are there is somebody better. Some of my friends were not accepted so they went to a regular HS. That’s the way the ball bounces. Some of them are now doing much better financially than me so it seems that Hashem really does decide how much parnassa each person gets.
On the other hand “unfavorable scholastic achievements” could be a euphemism for disruptiveness (“some of the details were altered”). If she indeed committed suicide over this apparently she was not very stable. This would explain the opposition of the other parents. IMHO if so they were right. They do not have to endanger their children because one girl’s parents miseducate her and will not seek proper help to undo the damage.July 17, 2017 12:30 pm at 12:30 pm #1318819
Avi K, there is a difference between getting poor grades and not going to school at all. And once she was accepted to a school after so much struggling, being rejected on the first day of school is devastating. It was a rejection from the entire community, not just the principal.July 17, 2017 12:34 pm at 12:34 pm #1318880
The selectivity among yeshivas and other private Orthodox institutions will be the downfall of the entire yeshiva system, should it refuse to evolve over-time.July 17, 2017 1:12 pm at 1:12 pm #1318979
I find it extremely hard to believe that enough parents would call a school and threaten to withdraw their child if “yaffa” was accepted that a hanhalah would act upon such a threat if the only issue was that “yaffa” was scholastically weak.
But hey, lets just assume the facts are accurate as reported and bash all Lakewood schools based on an anonymous letter and a story that may never have happened.July 17, 2017 1:13 pm at 1:13 pm #1318969
This letter and story read Lakewood. Reality is that this occurs almost constantly in the mainstream mosdos of Brooklyn, and I suspect Monsey. The attitude of the average yeshiva is מה לי לצרה הזאת. Let someone else deal with this “problem”. You are correct that this would be highly rare out of town.
You ask if there is any behavior that warrants other parents putting their foot down. My humble opinion – NO. The acceptance or rejection of a student is purely the responsibility and authority of the yeshiva administration. If they reject, they need to have a valid reason for this. If they accept, no other parent has the jurisdiction to intervene or interfere. If they wish to pull out their children, they are certainly free to do so. But to manipulate a yeshiva is plainly immoral. In addition, the yeshiva is required to know something about their applicants prior to admission. It is presumed that they have the ability to collect enough information and to make a responsible judgment about the appropriateness of the admission. Parents lack the resources to know enough and to have the judgment. There is also an assumption by the parents that they know what will transpire in the yeshiva with the other child present. That is extremely conceited.
The issue here is not about bashing principals. It is making an observation that what has become common practice can have deadly consequences. Even with less blood spilled, the destruction that such a rejection has on one’s emotional life is unfathomable. Picture this happening to your own child ch”v. You would be going nuclear. It is undeniable that what occurred here was a serious injustice.
You assume that this committed suicide, and that this indicates that she already suffered from emotional problems. You are not seeing the entire picture. I happen to know many young people like this. The pain of such rejection is enough to cause severe depression. The OTD problem has its roots in rejection. Being thrown to the street without recourse is a major blow, one that many struggle to recover from. Our Gedolim continually tell us that we need to be accepting and loving, but the “holier than thou” attitude that perpetuates rejection always wins. The losses of neshamos are great, whether their bodies remain alive or not. Someone with perfect mental health that gets this level of rejection is a prime candidate for the steep slope down. The rejector gives that push. The kid started off healthy.July 17, 2017 1:30 pm at 1:30 pm #1318987
There is no school named, so no one is bashing the school. Reality is that similar stories occur all the time, and there is something really stinky at the core of all this. That is the message, and that is why people are responding as they are. You may decide that this letter is a hoax, or that the missing information renders it trivial. But the real problem continues to exist, for boys and for girls. If you wish to deny the existence of the many hundreds of kids who are yeshivaless today, I wish for you teshuvah and kaporoh. I know nothing specific about Lakewood, but the problem is rampant throughout all the concentrated frum communities. Now, would you rather bury your head in the sand and pretend the problem doesn’t exist, or would you choose to recognize it and address it?July 17, 2017 1:31 pm at 1:31 pm #1318989
One ‘minor’ detail that might have been changed, is whether this ever actually occurred, or if this is just an ‘Op Ed’ attempt at trolling.
It works on comment boards, and it works for newspapers too.
I don’t doubt for a second that it COULD have happened. I have heard many horror stories of parents pressuring or attempting – in those instances where the Hanhola resisted and did the right thing – to get schools to do things that were not right.July 17, 2017 1:31 pm at 1:31 pm #1318993
I find nothing at all shocking about this. For far too long, our yeshiva system has played with the lives of our children, whether it be for money, smarts, attire, etc. Countless young people have had their lives destroyed by the selfish roshei yeshivos and administrators. Cant afford tuition? Out you go. Cant keep up with 20 blatt gemara a week, out you go. you wore a blue shirt? out you go. Smartphone? oh boy! and so on. Far too many suicides among “inzere”. While the home environment may not help sometimes, the burden lies mostly on the elitist attitude of the yeshivas. And regarding the education, would it kill them to teach something besides gemara? How about navi? how about chumash? how about hilchos Shabbos so that these young men know something when they get married? Secular education? forget that. Better to collect welfare and Medicaid. Hows that working out nowadays in Lakewood?July 17, 2017 2:12 pm at 2:12 pm #1319017
What does “unfavorable scholastic achievements” mean?”
Did she get poor grades? Yes that is what it means.
” I don’t see why other parents should care.”
Exactly which is why the story is so terrible
“However, her parents should have explained to her that she would not succeed in a school that demands scholastic excellence and looked for a less demanding school.”
– Reread the letter please. “She was excited to put in her best efforts”
– who said other schools were available?
” What do you want?”
that Girls should have a school, and once accepted shouldn’t be thrown out to pacify others.
” That she should be given good grades just to make her feel better?”
No, Im not sure where that came up in the letter or what that has to do with anything.
“I went to public schools in NYC. I was accepted into a “specialized” HS but only received middling grades there.”
thats great! are you suggesting this girl go to public school? otherwise whats the relevance?
…”Some of them are now doing much better financially than me so it seems that Hashem really does decide how much parnassa each person gets.”
this isnt about parnassah, it is about getting a Jewish education
“On the other hand “unfavorable scholastic achievements” could be a euphemism for disruptiveness”
I have never heard of that euphemism before. I think stick to the pashut pshat.
” If she indeed committed suicide over this apparently she was not very stable. ”
again, please reread the story, the suicide was several years later.
This would explain the opposition of the other parents. IMHO if so they were right.
“They do not have to endanger their children”
Endanger their children? I missed that part
” because one girl’s parents miseducate her and will not seek proper help to undo the damage.”
Are you sure we are talking about the same letter?July 17, 2017 2:30 pm at 2:30 pm #1319023
Please dodnt get me wrong I am bh making a nice parnasah but I am very frustrated seining all my siblings struggling with large families while still in kollel here in Lakewood,I am not sure I know of any hlaacha in the torah instructing us all to be poor without ever learning a parnasah that will give us some financial security.July 17, 2017 2:30 pm at 2:30 pm #1319022
Our whole system is a complete financial wreck large families,low incomes,huge tuition bills/widespread fraud for all the programs and everyone is silent. I am so discouraged that we are not tackling any of these problems heads on,we have the brain power but we are not doing anything.July 17, 2017 2:30 pm at 2:30 pm #1319021
I would venture to say that some of the people commenting here are young and did not have any first hand experience dealing with high schools here in Lakewood ,Its a disaster even for people like myself that are outwardly chasidesh/Yeshivish. Most people here in Lakewood/Brooklyn have their heads buried in the sand just like we will never tackle the problem of poverty/tuition we will never tackle the school problem. The state of our community is very dire and one big disaster, we have a massive parnasah crisis large families low incomes expensive lifestyles and no one is addressing this disaster we are all burying our heads in the sand are we waiting until the FBI will come and arrest 90% of our community for fraud???.July 17, 2017 2:54 pm at 2:54 pm #1319059
“If there are no specifics how can anyone render an opinion?”
Nobody, least of all the letter writer, asked for an opinion. You are off the hook.July 17, 2017 3:19 pm at 3:19 pm #1319096
I don’t know if the story is true, but I do know there’s a sick new trend in our society and it isn’t just in any one city.
There have always been class systems, or in some countries- caste systems. There were always separations between the upper and lower classes. What changes is what defines upper and lower class. In the olden days people were born into royalty or serfdom. There were and will always be differences between the wealthy and the poor.
Now a new class has risen in frum society. They keep their heads high, look down at those beneath them, and try their best to keep those lower down the rungs of the new social ladder out of their childrens’ schools. These are the nouveau yeshivish. Unlike the real Talmidei Chachamim of old who behaved like the humblest of men, they proudly display their ga’avah. They take pleasure in lording over the low class buffoons who are dumb enough to go out to work, can be found in the Bais Medrash at ridiculous times of day like 5 am or 10 pm, and may a wear a shirt that isn’t white. One can hardly fault school administrations for being careful not to offend the new elite by allowing children from such families into their institutions.
Exceptions are of course made if they happen to belong to the old elite, the ones who are subsidizing the whole sordid system.July 18, 2017 6:45 am at 6:45 am #1319465
1. I was suggesting lowering her sights and sending her to a less academically demanding school. Are there no such schools? My analogy should have been obvious.
2. The very strong implication was that the suicide was because of this.
3. She wrote that she changed some of the facts.
4. Obviously the writer thinks that an acceptance was coming to her.
Golfer,Talmidei chachamim have always looked down on amei aratzot. See Pesachim 43b. This exists in all societies and in both directions. In college towns there are tensions between the college people and the “townies”. Rabin hated Peres because the latter never served in the military (this is very common and there are also rivalries between different services and intelligence agencies). Even in socialist movements there were tensions between intellectuals and workers. I myself was rejected for a summer job driving a taxi because the boss did not like “college boys”.
The fact of the matter is that elite schools, both in secular and Torah studies, are necessary to develop those who are gifted. This is why NYC has specialized schools and why the business community donates to them. A person who is not accepted should be sameach b’chelko and move on.July 18, 2017 7:15 am at 7:15 am #1319514
Big difference between not accepted and kicked out the first day.July 18, 2017 9:21 am at 9:21 am #1319522
1. “Are there no such schools?”
No there arent
“2. The very strong implication was that the suicide was because of this.”
Reread the letter. IT was “after 5 years of tremendous pain”
“3. She wrote that she changed some of the facts.”
Yes because they dont want her identified. If the real story is she was expelled becasue she showed up with a gun on the first day, I dont think that can be considered “changing the facts”
Its not like the real story is a Zoo didnt accept a new pet rat because it had rabies.
Just replace “zoo” with “school”, “Rat” with “a girl”and “because it has Rabies ” with “because they were stuck up reshaim” and you uhave the same story.
That isnt what “some of the specifics were eliminated or altered means”
4. Obviously the writer thinks that an acceptance was coming to her.
Please please please please reread the letter! I dont think we are talking about the same letter. The letter I read said she was accepted! The principalJuly 18, 2017 9:41 am at 9:41 am #1319548
Avi K, you can make an argument that there is room in our society for schools or yeshivos where students with superior intellect or who have demonstrated academic excellence can thrive. One can suggest that separate classes for intellectually gifted students are as necessary as specialized programs for students who struggle with learning disabilities. The argument goes all the way back to Bais Hillel and Bais Shammai.
There is no need or possible excuse for schools catering to elite families.
A few years ago there was a video making the rounds of a menahel of a yeshiva in E”Y (Bet Shemesh possibly) who went to consult with Rav Shteinman. The menahel did not want to accept children from a certain family into his yeshiva. Rav Shteinman can be heard clearly telling the menahel that there is no excuse not to accept the children, “Dos is Ga’avah!”
As for your comment regarding Talmidei Chachamim I will respond, though hesitantly, as I’m not acquainted with the gemara you refer to. The non-kollel member of today who’s wearing a blue shirt is hardly ever a true am ha’aretz. While no one will say he has the Torah knowledge of let’s say your local Rav and posseik, he most likely has gone through a decent amount of Shas and poskim himself. Excluding his children from the same opportunities as those of the elite is simply a crime, even if his only claim to fame is that he is Shomer Torah u’Mitzvos and wants to afford his children the best possible Torah education.
And the plural is Amei Ha’aretz. (Or in popular jargon, for those who are not straddling safsalei bais hamedrash 24/7, Ammirratzim.)July 18, 2017 10:01 am at 10:01 am #1319598
People don’t generally commit suicide because they were born “unstable”. It happens when a person’s pain grows heavier than their will to live. This is different for different people, and some people are therefore more likely to commit suicide, but the best thing that society can do to prevent suicide is not to inflict pain on others that will overshadow their will to live, and to do our best to relieve those who are suffering.July 18, 2017 10:26 am at 10:26 am #1319682
What I am trying to understand is what was the author of the letter trying to accomplish? We know these issues still exist. Is that principal still employed by that yeshiva? Does that principal even remember the incident? Is it really a girl or is it a boy as some facts were changed?
To the OP:
What was your purpose in posting the letter here? Most of us would never have seen it as we don’t live in Lakewood.July 18, 2017 10:46 am at 10:46 am #1319720
The little I know and golfer:
You are probably far more knowledgeable in this area than any other posters here, and your age, experience, and wisdom render your comments noteworthy.
However, In my limited experience with my own family and assisting friends with placing their children in appropriate schools (in Brooklyn), I have not encountered this bigotry that you mention, even in the most yeshivish yeshivos.
Most people want to fit in with the crowd at their children’s schools, so a man who wears a blue shirt would usually not apply to a school where everyone wears white ones.
If he does apply and is rejected, it is most likely not because of an elitist attitude; rather, his wife may not have the requisite level of tznius for that school, or they may have unfiltered internet, and that is against school policy.
I have seen people who are not of the “nouveau yeshivish” class (working or from different backgrounds) be accepted into those schools because they conform to the standards of the yeshivish decision-makers in matters of kedusha, not the color of their shirts.July 18, 2017 10:48 am at 10:48 am #1319813
As many posters have correctly noted, there isn’t sufficient information provided to offer anything more than a general sense of grief for the loss of an innocent yiddeshe neshama, whatever the circumstances. We do not know the relative contributions of any personal psychiatric disorders, the particular event involving the school, prior disciplinary events in other schools, the relationship with parents and family etc. ALL of which likey were a contributing factor to some degree. The highly competitive Lakewood yeshiva/beis Yaakov admissions process is really not that different from those in other frum communities and indeed, is probably less stressful than admissions have become to secular private schools in the NYC metropolitan area. Yeshivos are a business in a highly competitive market and must operate to at least break even and earn a profit. They cannot afford to antagonize their customer base any more so than other businesses absent some fundamental issue of ethics or borderline illegality. If this girl was mamash admitted without the proper vetting to the yeshiva’s standards or would have resulted in conflict and brogias with the school’s existing student base and families, they were within their rights to reverse an admissions decision. They may not have handled it well, but thats a separate issue. If we want to “socialize” yeshiva education just like the public school systems and create a network of yeshivos that MUST accept all students without regard to their academic credentials, parents yichus or ability to pay, or minor disciplinary issues in other schools, than we need to have mosdos that collect and distribute the funds and have sufficient administrative expertise to manage such an open enrollment program. I hear many heilege rabbonim and askanim crying gevalt about boys and girls who cannot find a school but don’t see many of them doing much to solve the problem.July 18, 2017 10:56 am at 10:56 am #1319837
They cannot afford to antagonize their customer base any more so than other businesses absent some fundamental issue of ethics or borderline illegality. If this girl was mamash admitted without the proper vetting to the yeshiva’s standards or would have resulted in conflict and brogias with the school’s existing student base and families, they were within their rights to reverse an admissions decision.
No they weren’t in their rights to reverse an admissions decision, unless that girl posed a direct threat to other students. Of course, we don’t know that that wasn’t the case, because details were not provided.July 18, 2017 11:01 am at 11:01 am #1319847
This is as sad as it gets, …Whoever gave the ultimatum should have been told the school made the decision, you are not greater than the school and if you don’t like it there is the door.
But the school ran itself like a business who was worried about losing an important customer …
editedJuly 18, 2017 11:46 am at 11:46 am #1319891
“they were within their rights to reverse an admissions decision.”
I will leave the discussion of whether it is or isnt within their right to reverse their acceptance decision to others.
This is directed at the alleged actions of the school, where they notified the family of the change by informing the girl in school, on the first day of school. it would have been hard enough on her had they called the house the night before, spoken to the parents who would have had the difficult task of breaking the news to their daughter, but they would have done so with compassion, let her cry our her frustration etc… but, to inform the girl, in school a mistake was made and send her home?July 18, 2017 11:58 am at 11:58 am #1319893
Ubiq -“Other student’s parents complained that she was accepted.
she was rejected
and ultimately died. (the implication is suicide though this sint explicit either)”
That’s not the usual. They usually become drug addicts, due to their rejection!July 18, 2017 12:28 pm at 12:28 pm #1319962
Drug addicts are suicide risks.July 18, 2017 12:31 pm at 12:31 pm #1319965
GadolH: You wrote: The highly competitive Lakewood yeshiva/beis Yaakov admissions process is really not that different from those in other frum communities and indeed, is probably less stressful than admissions have become to secular private schools in the NYC metropolitan area.
Actually, due to the limited number of Girls High Schools , it is more stressful then even in NYC.July 18, 2017 12:45 pm at 12:45 pm #1319970
The Little I know:
You are right, no one is bashing A school. They are just bashing a whole town.
I am not hiding my head in the sand and saying that there are no problems with the school system. But to pick an example so radical that it almost certainly didn’t happen – 100 parents called to complain that they accepted a kid with an 80 average and all their kids got 90s (OK so I am exaggerating) or they asked on the application whether I wore a blue shirt, etc. is not doing any of the kids without a school a service. It just creates a lot of hype about things that are NOT the issue. I would say that every high school in Lakewood, including the ones with the reputation of high academic standards, have a mix of all scholastic levels and work very hard to help these students scholastically, tutoring, modified testing, etc.
At the risk of sounding like NASAI, The biggest issue in terms of Lakewood schools are not the elitist attitude but the population boom that the existing schools cannot keep up with. And when any regular person whose kid has no issues tells you they couldn’t get their kid into school in Lakewood, ask them how many of the 20-30 elementary schools that exist THEY were willing to consider. To hear people talk, THEY are entitled to say that a school is not the right crown for them but for a school to say that about THEM is an outrage. They can say I would NEVER send my kid to a newer school, but for a school that has been around for 15 years to say that after siblings and teachers kids they are full is terrible? And if the school has a certain standard in terms of dress, internet use etc. then how DARE they use their standards to reject my Tayreh yiddeshe Kind. Why should anyone presume that THEY should take the responsibility for their child and change the way they dress, watch, connect?!
Are there kids who can’t get into school? Yes. Is it a problem? Yes But to suggest that the root of the problem is any schools elitist, gavadik attitude without admitting that there are real issues behind most of the refusals will not to anything to solve the problem or lead to any chance of reasonable dialog on the issueJuly 18, 2017 1:02 pm at 1:02 pm #1319996
Tb, I’ve seen similar situations to what was described here.July 18, 2017 1:21 pm at 1:21 pm #1320080
Aishet chover, I was happy to read what you wrote. I also know of a couple of places that run their admissions the way you said and it’s nice to hear they’re not the exception. If more schools behave the way you describe and we as a society try to accommodate and educate children of all backgrounds, we can look forward to a successful next generation.July 18, 2017 1:43 pm at 1:43 pm #1320278
aishes chover and godolhadorah:
Both of your comments give yeshivos a pass for being brutal to talmidim. I wish to set a few things straight, as priorities that should exist in chinuch.
AC: You posited that the issue of denying admission was based on matters of kedusha, not elitist attitude or shirt color. My simple reaction – I wish that were true. Sadly, it is certainly not true. One case I know involved a school trying to reject a student because the father was seen with a blue shirt. He happens to work in construction, and this was a working uniform. He never appeared in shul without appropriate dress. It took intense lobbying effort to get the school to accept a perfectly normal student from a normal family. Does any yeshiva administrator truly know anything at all about someone’s kedusha? I know way too many cases in which clergy have been playing around where no one should go, yet their children are universally accepted, and get great, newsworthy shidduchim. There is quite a bit of conceit in believing that we can estimate the level of kedusha anytime, anywhere, anyone. The reality is that the bigotry is thriving. It goes under different labels, which sound appealing to the frum ear, but are actually bluff. Length of shaitel? Really?
gadolhadorah: You wrote, “Yeshivos are a business in a highly competitive market and must operate to at least break even and earn a profit. They cannot afford to antagonize their customer base any more so than other businesses absent some fundamental issue of ethics or borderline illegality. If this girl was mamash admitted without the proper vetting to the yeshiva’s standards or would have resulted in conflict and brogias with the school’s existing student base and families, they were within their rights to reverse an admissions decision. ”
If you listen to the rhetoric that gets repeated by the administrators and leaders at the annual fundraiser events, you will hear the wonderful accolades about how this yeshiva is so successful at providing a desperately needed service to the tzibbur, and how dedicated they are to the youth of Klal Yisroel. That is a shameful lie, and they know it. Your characterization of yeshivos is painfully true. They are competitors in a marketplace, and want to everything conceivable to make their name and image second to none. That is the elitist attitude that gives special dispensation to wealth and political clout. You referenced their “customer base”, which consists only of existing parents, but excludes the rest of Klal Yisroel. Your description gave all the power to the parents and their opinions as the real customers, without a trace of the dedication to the children. The children are only incidentals. Can anyone believe that this concept even exists as a passing thought? Well, it is not just a passing thought, but one that has become the unwritten mission statement. One that defies every statement by Gedolei Yisroel about chinuch. The video clip of Rav Shteinman shlit”a is very telling, and only a single example of what many have been saying for generations. But it barely exists in Klal Yisroel today, and this is a source of great shame to us all.
Some of these “Yaffas” have gone on to become great, going against the odds, and pouring their pain into the fuel tanks of motivation. Others went to forms of anesthesia, drowning their pain in drugs, street life, the fantasy (and its inherent dangers) of the internet. Yes, some died of suicide and overdose. Those who survived physically may have perished emotionally and spiritually. But this blood was spilled, and was murder, not real suicide.
You nailed the situation quite well, and you should be commended for it. Yeshivos are a business in a competitive environment. But should this be true? I believe that Torah should be available to all, and that chinuch should be, as the Chazon Ish ZT”L proclaimed, geared to the yochid, no longer the tzibbur. Are the yeshivos doing a public service?July 18, 2017 1:49 pm at 1:49 pm #1320341
TLIK, I find it fascinating how you quote “the Gedolei Yisroel” as authoritative when it fits your worldview, but couldn’t care less what they hold when you don’t agree with them.July 18, 2017 1:57 pm at 1:57 pm #1320375
“Drug addicts are suicide risks.”
they also overdose and die. Why assume suicide?July 18, 2017 1:58 pm at 1:58 pm #1320403
Again…I reiterate that too many here have an idealized view of what are the obligations of a yeshiva in today’s world. Its not what they SHOULD be doing, its what they can and are doing within the limits of their resources and how they are organized. Most importantly, they are NOT holding themselves out as educators of last resort who will take in ANY student. From a legal perspective, they are no different from a private college or university where we read several times a month that offers of admission (typically sent via email) were extended in error and subsequently withdrawn . Sometimes they explain the error; most of the time they simply say “Sorry…we screwed up without any explanation and rescind the offer as they are legally entitled to do). This Yeshiva in Lakewood MAY HAVE behaved unfairly to the student but unless they entered into some contractual obligation, they can normally ask the student to leave at ANY time and with no reason.
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