The slowly disappearing community school of old.

Home Coffeeroom Yeshiva / School / College / Education Issues The slowly disappearing community school of old.

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    Mosdos Hachinuch were once recognized as communal entities built by the Klall & served the tzibbur. They were true non for profit organizations whose sole mission was teaching Torah V’darkei Hashem to the youth of Klall Yisroel. Think of names like Yeshiva of Brooklyn, Torah Vodaas, Chaim Berlin, & of course the Chassidesher mosdos as well.
    We are entering a period of time where mosdos are being built as boutique private schools which are very exclusive about who may attend. Anyone with a family problem or the chance of paying less than full tuition is encouraged to look elsewhere. This especially happens in the girl’s schools which have turned into business ventures with little competition. Parents behind in their tuition are often told to keep their daughters home until a financial plan is worked out, leading to the shaming of innocent children.
    Maybe it’s time for us as a tzibbur to bring back the purely L’shem shomayim community school where the policies will be decided by the most respected Rabbonim of a town. A community school built by the tzibbur for the tzibbur.



    i agree with you & its a shame that true schools today have been destroyed & are now businesses like a college & your innocent kid & parents get tested when applying to see if they are rich enough or the type for how we feel we want our students & parents body of my school to be.

    what a shame of returning to sodom



    A problem avoided OOT. Communities generally have one school and all are welcome. The greater Jewish community (non-frum) supports these schools though allocations from the local Jewish Federation.



    Those idyllic times never existed. The community school I attended in the 1950s accepted your word that you couldn’t pay tuition, and rebeiim would go months without a paycheck. One classmate dressed in shmattes to avoid paying. His parents tried the same thing in high school. He came to class on first day in real nice clothes, explaining that the high school had a committee and wanted to see tax returns before granting a scholarship. His father was earning 100k in 1964.
    My fil served on a scholarship committee in 1965. He lived in an apartment yet paid full tuition while people who owned homes and new cars were requesting and getting tuition reductions.
    What I’m saying is that if you want to pay renned a living wage and pay it on time you must run a yeshiva as a business. If you give scholarships on the honor system, people will take advantage



    Of course community schools are disappearing., the entire concept of community is disappearing. See CTlawyers comment.



    when lakewood was a small community 20 years ago & before then, every school open then was open to every child & it was not hard to get your children into school even if you did not have money to cover tuition (a full year was about $1000 wish it would still be same price now)



    Jakob, how can you piay rebbeim on $1000 a year tuition?



    Large classes.



    You can pay staff with only $1,000 per student tuition if the school has:
    1> a LARGE endowment
    2> a substantial benefactor (or a few) who underwrite the difference between income and expenses
    3> does substantial successful fundraising
    4> subsidies from another organization (such as Federation)
    5> other sources of income (I know one school that makes enough from rental of classrooms and facilities at night to a college for a satellite campus to cover 1/3 the annual budget



    when lakewood was a full %100 ihr Hatorah 15 years ago & before then, schools were not a business & money was NEVER a issue to hold a child back from being accepted into the school. the business office & CEO of each school put their faith & trust in Hashem that they will make it through the year financially. School lunches are paid by the government together with lots of askanim who sponsored the learning of TASHBAR so they can be part of the mitzva too



    It was more like twenty five years ago when Lakewood schools didn’t make a major issue about tuition. Back then you were dealing with a crowd who considered paying tuition a priority. No one who said they can’t pay was spending money on luxuries. Also thirty years ago the Rebbeim in Lakewood Cheder went on strike for not being paid. Today neither the Rebbeim or parents would tolerate such a situation. So of course there will be more pressure to pay tuition.

    Much as I wish community schools were still around I do have to acknowledge that they were not very successful. They end up becoming schools for all those who have issues or aren’t interested in learning. It is important of course to have such a school but truthfully they didn’t disappear because of their successes.



    I think CTLAWYER is right — a lot of OOT schools, especially in small communities, will accept pretty much everyone, regardless of how much you can pay, your level of observance, your academic aptitude, etc. (unless there is a severe disability they can’t accommodate or something).

    Chabad community schools are known for taking everyone. Perhaps this is a task for the next generation of shluchim looking for something new to do — start high schools that will accept those who get rejected elsewhere, but which are run in a way that is acceptable to Yeshivish and other non-Chabad families?

    Rabbi Shais Taub’s column in Ami last week was about this issue, and if I remember correctly he basically suggested that schools should accept everyone, even if it seems they might not have the room or the resources needed to help that students, since after all schools are meant to help individuals, not to help the institution itself.


    Haimy: You wrote “Think of names like Yeshiva of Brooklyn, Torah Vodaas, Chaim Berlin,” I am not sure what time period you are referring to but not mentioning three other mosdos, that of Yeshiva Toras Emes when it was in Boro Park and led by Rabbi Elias Schwartz A”H, Prospect Park led by Rabbi Avrahom Kelman A”H, and Bais Yaakov of Boro Park led by Rabbi Oscar Ehrenreich Shlita is a disservice.

    All of these institutions were led by individuals who worked with parents on all issues including if students were not the “best” and if parents couldn’t pay full tuition. I think the amazing fact is that all the institutions mentioned were led by talmidim of R’ Shraga Feivel Mendelowitz or were directly influenced by some of his decisions.

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