ANOTHER shocking LETTER published IN the VOICE of LAKEWOOD
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July 21, 2017 6:45 am at 6:45 am #1322248☢️ Rand0m3x 🎲Participant
(And an even more attention-grabbing thread title. Serious thread, though.)
To the mothers whose sons bullied my son in yeshivah this year:
I was told that boys will be boys.
I was told that it was all in good humor.
I was told that my son asked for it.
I was told that my son was annoying them, so it made sense that they hit him.
Again, and again, and again.
My son came home bruised, scraped, and cut, his clothing often ruined. I have photos.
I was told I had no halachic or legal recourse, that if I tried to get help through those avenues
my son would be expelled* and that no other yeshivah would accept him.
As the Yomim Nora’im come closer, ask your sons if they ever ganged up on a boy.
If they ever held a kid down, left bruises, spilled blood, tore clothing, made fun,
called names, and threatened to make it worse if he told on them.
My whole family suffers from the pain my son is in.
Ain Yom Kippur mechaperes.
(*There is a comma here in the original text, but what I think is
the intended meaning should have been written without one.)July 21, 2017 8:42 am at 8:42 am #1322304
This should have been addressed to the father rather than the mother.July 21, 2017 9:13 am at 9:13 am #1322318Avram in MDParticipant
This should have been addressed to the father rather than the mother.
The letter writer was probably the boy’s mother. Are you suggesting that a frum married woman should address correspondance to men who are not her husband?July 21, 2017 9:52 am at 9:52 am #1322326
No. The father of the hurt child should have addressed the issue to the fathers of the other children.July 21, 2017 9:53 am at 9:53 am #1322328
If the letter is correct, absolutely call the police. Getting expelled is bad, but anyone who would threaten to expel someone for seeking justice against physical violence is probably just a violent person trying to protect himself.July 21, 2017 10:37 am at 10:37 am #1322360
The staff and administration of the yeshiva are mandated reporters. IF the boy was bullied, cut, scraped, hit etc. They are battery to the person and the authorities and Child Protective services must be notified.
None of this boys will be boys nonsense is acceptable.
This is the same look away attitude that allowed child molestation to take place in the yeshivas, and day schools of the frum world.
It is the other boys who should be expelledJuly 21, 2017 10:52 am at 10:52 am #1322388
Private school personnel in NY are not mandated to report anytime when one child bullies or hits another child.July 21, 2017 11:02 am at 11:02 am #1322424ColumbiaGrad17Participant
I’m not surprised to see such horror studies being publicized in droves recently. The yeshiva system has been failing significantly over the past decade, and a tremendous amount of reform and modernization is required to save its primary structure.July 21, 2017 11:03 am at 11:03 am #1322420
again, Take your NY blinders off.
Lakewood is NOT in NY.
You claim to teach in the NY public schools ad therefore are a mandated reporter. I assume you’ve had some training. There is no reason that Yeshiva staff should also not be trained.July 21, 2017 11:14 am at 11:14 am #1322434
CTL, the last thread reprinting a letter about schooling from the Voice of Lakewood we learnt today in that thread that the school in question wasn’t even in Lakewood.
Furthermore, what I stated above for NY schools is also true about NJ private schools.July 21, 2017 12:05 pm at 12:05 pm #1322460zahavasdadParticipant
Bullying is a problem in most schools and Yeshivas are not exemptJuly 21, 2017 12:12 pm at 12:12 pm #1322465
Actually a school employee (private or public) whop does not report the abuse is breaking the law in NJ. NJDCF says that any person who does not report suspected abuse (bullying is abuse) is a ‘disorderly person.’
NJ Statute on Child Abuse:
“9:6-8.9. ABUSED CHILD; CHILD ABUSE DEFINED
For purposes of this act:
“Abused child” means a child under the age of 18 years whose parent, guardian, or other person having his custody and control:
a. Inflicts or allows to be inflicted upon such child physical injury by other than accidental means which causes or creates a substantial risk of death, or serious or protracted disfigurement, or protracted impairment of physical or emotional health or protracted loss or impairment of the function of any bodily organ;…”
School teachers have been deemed to have custody and control during the school year…they act in locus parentis.
BTW>>>>NY Statute does NOT exempt private school teachers from reporting abuse:
Professionals Required to Report
Soc. Serv. Law § 413
The following persons and officials are required to report:
• Physicians, physician assistants, surgeons, medical examiners, coroners, dentists, dental hygienists, osteopaths, optometrists,
chiropractors, podiatrists, residents, interns, psychologists, registered nurses, social workers, or emergency medical
• Licensed creative arts therapists, marriage and family therapists, mental health counselors, or psychoanalysts
• Hospital personnel or Christian Science practitioners
• School officials, including but not limited to, teachers, guidance counselors, school psychologists, school social workers, school nurses, or administrators….”
The NY Statute does NOT read Public School ‘officials…teachers’, etc.July 21, 2017 12:29 pm at 12:29 pm #1322478
The other boys should not be expelled either. It’s not their fault that nobody ever taught them that hitting people is wrong.July 21, 2017 12:29 pm at 12:29 pm #1322477
A school child bullying or hitting another school child (absent severe physical violence or injury) does not fit the legal description of abuse, regarding mandated reporting, in the NY or NJ statues. If a first grader hits the kid next to him, or a fifth grader, you don’t call 911 or CPS.July 21, 2017 12:29 pm at 12:29 pm #1322476DaMosheParticipant
Joseph, you are falling to a new low this time. A letter is talking about dinei nifashos, and you choose to focus on which parent should write the letter, who it should be addressed to, and whether the school is required to handle it.
I repeat: this is DINEI NIFASHOS. A child being bullied in school can have long-term effects. I DON”T CARE WHICH PARENT WRITES THE LETTER!!! Joseph, you are the very definition of a chossid shoteh. I really don’t know why the mods still tolerate you – if it were up to me, I would have banned you a long time ago.
Whether the local laws require reporting or not shouldn’t matter. The school has a halachic responsibility to act on it. End of story.July 21, 2017 12:34 pm at 12:34 pm #1322509ColdnCanadaParticipant
I would not tolerate this at all. I would just go to a local Rav and ask what to do. A school that is running like this is a sakana to its students and should really be shut down. Any hanhala member that would say something like this should not be in chinuch. I am thankful my kids go to a school where this would not be tolerated. I question the talmidim’s lineage. Jews don’t beat up other jews!July 21, 2017 12:46 pm at 12:46 pm #1322512
Ongoing bullying can cause protracted impairment of emotional health…the language of the NY Statute.
STOP excusing bad behavior and start stopping bad behavior.
You may be a history teacher, but I’m a Family Law Attorney and certified Guardian ad Litem. If I represented a child and the school gave these repeated excuses, the school and staff would find themselves in court pronto. The cloak of a yeshiva being a private school is not an excuse for non-compliance with the law…and NY law makes every adult a mandated reporter…this is the broadest language in the nation.July 21, 2017 12:47 pm at 12:47 pm #1322514
DaMoshe, bla, bla, bla. Go off rattling whatever you falsely spew again. This thread isn’t the school officials deliberating on how to respond to this accusation from some anonymous parent in an anonymous school. Discussing the statues and laws and whatever else is part of a general discussion, which is all this thread is. So take your liberal religion of encouraging mixed parties and hedonism elsewhere.July 21, 2017 12:47 pm at 12:47 pm #1322516KotlorismParticipant
Why people are even responding to @Joseph is beyond me. He just sits and trolls all day long. He loves Neturei karta, extreme Satmar views, hates anyone and everyone basically.
This mother should have reported the school to the police, and called Amudim immediately. Enough of the Shfichas domim!
EditedJuly 21, 2017 12:51 pm at 12:51 pm #1322520BlackHatLLCParticipant
@joseph is a well known stalker. He has stalked many people on line. He has a long track record of engaging in very sketchy behavior. Keep your distance people. Just ask some mods here what he is capable of.
And your wondering why he is condoning abuse and covering up bullying. the man is a bully himself. and that is an understatementJuly 21, 2017 12:51 pm at 12:51 pm #1322519
Don’t equate fighting with bullying. A one time incident in which one child hurts another is very different from a case where a child is being bullied by a bunch of other kids. A child who is bullied like what’s described in the letter is likely to develop PTSD.July 21, 2017 12:58 pm at 12:58 pm #1322527
So if five fifth graders are bullying another kid, should 911 or CPS be called and those five kids placed in handcuffs and put in foster care?July 21, 2017 1:06 pm at 1:06 pm #1322534
The five fifth graders should be treated like any other criminal children.July 21, 2017 1:36 pm at 1:36 pm #1322557
If we treat those five fifth graders as you just suggested we treat them, it’ll be no wonder those five become OTD as a result of treating them as you suggest.July 21, 2017 1:48 pm at 1:48 pm #1322558
Maybe there is a bigger need to address the Elephant(s) / ZOO in the room!!!
– Fathers are learning all day and don’t make enough to support families. They are also not educated and have trouble finding jobs even if they NEED to work…
– Girls are expected to become mothers and primary breadwinners. They are educated with the skills to do that. An average high school age girl probably has 20-100x the education of a similar aged yeshiva student. [Both secular and Torah education – boys are not generally taught Nevi’im, barely enough Halacha]
– Families are kept on government programs, barely able to afford rent, forget ever owning a home.
– Children continue to be born, yet cannot be cared for by the working mother. Father may pitch in somewhat, but “bittul Torah” (there have been discussions about this in CR in the past)
– Children are often/somtimes? (stats anyone?) left in childcare, which cannot adequately provide the love and care that a mother can.
– Fathers need to end up working at some point, so they become Rebbes.
– Most people can’t afford tuition, so Rebbes are barely paid, and often paid many months late. It’s hard to feel any satisfaction in teaching, when you are 3 months late on your rent, and have countless insurmountable expenses. Frustrated Rebbes cannot provide love and care to students. They get home and this may spill over to rest of family.
– Kids grow up with little to no formal secular education, lacking guidance from proper teachers, parents. Get frustrated at what they experienced and lack of future if they continue the trend. The ones who were bullied, molested, whatever, want nothing to do with the religion that they see as having hurt and disadvantaged them so much. Others never want to be poor like the way they grew up and try to get into (sometimes shady) business. Etc…
– Marriageable age men who realize they cannot provide for a family, go to work, cutting their shidduch options. The girls claim to want only “learning” boys, but often truly want a financially stable life.
The system is falling apart. Is this not a recipe for disaster? Maybe the OTD phenomenon is correlated with this? Am I the only one who notices this?July 21, 2017 1:52 pm at 1:52 pm #1322573☕ DaasYochid ☕Participant
The system is falling apart.
There are some very serious problems. A lot of improvement is needed. But, pray tell, which system is better?July 21, 2017 2:06 pm at 2:06 pm #1322576
Joseph, you’re treating young people who break the law wrong.July 21, 2017 2:43 pm at 2:43 pm #1322581
“Young people”? 10 year olds in fifth grade are children.July 21, 2017 2:43 pm at 2:43 pm #1322585
How about 15 year old?July 21, 2017 2:43 pm at 2:43 pm #1322583
I’m the original letter writer. Why shouldn’t I have written it? Why should my husband have written it?July 21, 2017 2:49 pm at 2:49 pm #1322590
Joseph, children are young people. That’s just what they are. They’re people, and they are young.
Mama1, Joseph doesn’t think women should do things.July 21, 2017 2:49 pm at 2:49 pm #1322592
Mama1, what sort of “halachic recourse” did you intend to seek? Who advised you that availing yourself to halachic recourse will result in expulsion?July 21, 2017 2:53 pm at 2:53 pm #1322597
Mama1, because it is the fathers responsibility to discipline their sons. And the father of who was hurt should address it to the fathers of those who did it.July 21, 2017 3:22 pm at 3:22 pm #1322605Yad14Participant
My children were raised in a time when many parents who were angry and hurt – and we are finding out now has often been the case had themselves been bullied – felt threatened and were threatened/told to keep quiet. More power to the parents and children who are able to stand up against this! I will venture to say – and I would appreciate professional substantiation to this – that this is the major cause for the sadness and anxiety of today’s population. But it CAN change, and this is how it starts. Be blessed, Mama1.July 21, 2017 3:23 pm at 3:23 pm #1322580
I don’t know which system is better. I know that this one needs a lot of work. Many others know it too. I know that the Tannaim worked and made money to support themselves. I know Hillel carried bundles of wood to make a living. I know that in most frum neighborhoods, even a man with a really good job can barely (if at all) make ends meet while supporting a family. We all know a lot of things, but what we DO is all that matters.
I honestly feel that if Moshe Rabenu would happen to live among us, he would not recognize much of the “religion” that we practice. We might even shun him for not being frum enough. I believe we have somehow strayed so far off the reservation, that we glorify some image of “Yiddishkeit” that is not Torah, and may sometimes even border on Avoda Zara – each community in its own way.
Ehrlichkei has gone down the drain. Let’s work on making a renaissance of being a mensch. It’s a tall order, but if we start with that, there might be some hope. /rantJuly 21, 2017 3:32 pm at 3:32 pm #1322618zahavasdadParticipant
Most people went OTD in the Alter Heim because of economic reasons. While there certainly were a few that had theistic reasons, the majority was simplye economic reasons. You could not earn ends meet in the Shtetl and you had to either go to the Big cities like Warsaw or the Godena MedinaJuly 21, 2017 5:19 pm at 5:19 pm #1322631
Mothers are also responsible to educate their children. Sorry, misogyny has no place in real Yiddishkeit.
I appreciate the validation that this issue is serious enough that the authorities should have been called, but if we follow that scenario to its probable end, my son would probably not have a school to go to next year. And then what would I do? Go to court? I can’t afford it.
I don’t know what the mandated reporting laws are here. What I do know is that anyone who reported such a thing would find him/herself out of a job (as per a mechanech I spoke to). And there are possible shmiras halashon issues here – so it’s not that simple.
I did try going to a community resource that purported to help with bullying claims. Not so helpful.
RebYidd23 – Maybe not expelled, but maybe disciplined? Anything. Definitely not laughing while it’s happening or telling my son that he “asked for it”. Anyone with any psychology background knows how terribly damaging that is to a child’s psyche.
Local rav – that would be a nice idea except what would a rav do? Think – if the school has no respect for mentchlichkeit, why would they have the middos and derech eretz to listen to a rav? And how, exactly, would the rav make them listen?
CTlawyer – you are correct, the damage to emotional health is staggering. Not to mention the damage to spiritual health – if this is how seemingly frum yidden behave, what’s the point?
Kotlorism – who is this Amudim and how do they help? I tried what I think is a similar program and they were basically useless.
The bullying went on for the entire year. I didn’t realize how bad it was until Pesach time. This child is in high school, so, a child, technically, but not a small one. CPS is not necessary. If the school had a zero tolerance policy instead of taking the easiest way out by attacking one kid (my son) instead of the whole gang of teenage miscreants (a much harder task) this whole thing would have been avoided.
Kollelman – I’m not sure if you’re saying these are issues with me or the parents of the bullies, but I would like to mention, my husband and I both work, not on any government programs, I have less than the ‘usual’ number of children and they are not close in age, I pay full tuition even though it makes making ends meet difficult (we believe that chinuch is a priority over a mansion), my children have a formal secular education and we frequent the public library. And I grew up in Lakewood. So I don’t think I fit your stereotype.
Daas Yochid – It’s not the system, it’s the people who are falling apart.
It’s a simple solution:
Educators should be college educate in the psychology of their target demographic. Parents should insist on an in-house psychology professional that students can see, and discussions should be kept confidential from parents and faculty unless the child signs a release form – or if mandated by law.
Both of these should be mandatory, or the school gets no public funding, including tax deductions, Pell and Tag grants, and whatever else they get.
When my grandfather was dying, he told my grandmother that when looking for shidduchim for their daughters, she should look for a man who was a “mentch, a yaray shamayim, and ken lernen a bissel, in THAT order”. Those were the priorities I grew up with, and that is what I was lucky to find as well. So this “learn gemara all day and beat up and taunt kids during recess” thing is beyond my comprehension.
Bashing “the system” is not the point here. Make a change. Call your school Find out their policies. Don’t pay tuition if your child is suffering and no one is helping. Keep calling and pushing the school until they change. And if your child describes trouble in school, take it seriously. Write down names so that you can keep track of emerging patterns and address it. And educate your children – teach them what bullying is and to never do it. Teach them about the beauty in every neshama, even if they can’t see it.
These boys are all required by halacha to ask mechila. My child is older than 13. But no one will think that it’s them or their child. Ask yourself this: what if you discovered that your child is the bully? What would you do?July 21, 2017 6:23 pm at 6:23 pm #1322647
Mama1 – I’m totally on your side. I think there are systemic problems, which we both brought up. I think that the school’s lack of mentschlichkeit is proof of the issues. There are MANY misplaced priorities in the frum world. I often tell my children, I don’t care about the report card – I care about the Middos. Fail a test and don’t cheat; Respect the Rebbe/Teacher/Principal/Everyone, no matter what your friends are doing; Don’t follow blindly. I show them examples of cases that people all did something wrong en mass.
Derech Eretz is THE foundation of Torah. You cannot be built on top of a rotten or missing foundation. Until everyone is on the same page about this, we will get nowhere as a nation. You may not crack a random stranger’s cell phone, because you believe it’s a sin to use one. You may not block the roads and cause hardship/danger/damage to people in protest of government policies. You may not throw rocks at people who violate Shabbos. You may not publicly embarrass people for talking in Shul. You may not block people’s driveways even for “a minute”. You may not double park, blocking cars in, while you shop or get a manicure. I can go on and on.
We are in sore need of a re-prioritization of what TRUE Torah Judaism is. It’s NOT Kana’us; it’s not trying to up-frum the next person; it’s not bleaching the clothes of women who you believe are not dressed properly; nor is it women principals lifting girls’ skirts to check if they are wearing tights or socks. It’s systemic. It needs fixing. It needs to be preached week after week, probably much more than any “talking in shul” initiative. It’s the 3 weeks…one can only hope.July 21, 2017 6:23 pm at 6:23 pm #1322650Love allParticipant
The Solution is simple, as in every job people get burnt out. A principal, dean, rabbi,teacher should have a stature of limitations of a few years, this way they will be enthusiastic about their job and care enough to tackle bullies not just push it aside because there may be a confrontation. This is unfortunately not just in the wonderful 08701 area code but all across the world sad sad sad. You are your child’s only advocate there should be no threat in the world that can stop a parent from setting the record straight for their children. A well known mechnuch once told me 90% of parents don’t get involved so the small amount that do are generally considered a nuance but continue to make wave and keep the schoo on their toes so that they know they will have to answer still in this world.July 21, 2017 6:23 pm at 6:23 pm #1322652
Of course the bullies should be disciplined. But it seems here like nobody is doing anything at all to stop this. Why is the yeshivah allowing physical violence to happen?July 21, 2017 6:44 pm at 6:44 pm #1322675
You’re asking me why? The given reasons were that since my son annoyed them, it made sense that they hit him (he talks a lot in class) and also, “that’s just how boys behave, Mrs -, you don’t understand!”
If that’s the basic attitude, then there’s nothing to punish.
It’s easier to gaslight the victim than to address the perpetrator.
My short answer, laziness.July 22, 2017 10:40 pm at 10:40 pm #1322756
In that case, the yeshivah bears a lot of responsibility for this.July 22, 2017 11:02 pm at 11:02 pm #1322758
@LoveAll these mechanchim aren’t old enough or experienced enough to be ‘burnt out’. I think one has to be teaching for longer than they have been to earn that excuse. I still call laziness and lack of knowledge.July 22, 2017 11:32 pm at 11:32 pm #1322767chaya13Participant
As an elementary school mechanech, I must caution everyone that for every parent out there who have real reason to be concerned (and there are enough of those out there), there are is also a parent of a child who is imagining something is happening that really isn’t or a parent who is blowing out of proportion a problem that needs to be addressed, but does not need to be dealt with using atomic measures. Never the less these parents will hound the school to the detriment of their own child and the other children in their child’s class.July 23, 2017 12:42 am at 12:42 am #1322777
Being an elementary school mechanech does not qualify you to say that.July 23, 2017 12:55 am at 12:55 am #1322784
@Chaya13: How much experience do you have? How many years of formal education? This occurred in high school, with photo evidence. That’s the topic here. For every parent that is accused if “blowing things out of proportion”, probably half of them aren’t. I was accused if overreacting, blowing things out of proportion, and of wanting to make a “federal case” out of everything (an actual quote. My son had deep cuts on his forearm. I have pictures of it. I was still accused. How do you not see the problem? You might need to take a step back and do a cheshbon hanefesh. You might be part of it.July 23, 2017 12:56 am at 12:56 am #1322782bk613Participant
For an elementary school mechanech your grammar is atrocious. Maybe that part of the problem, we have people with no education educating our children.July 23, 2017 12:57 am at 12:57 am #1322783Avi KParticipant
Actually, some courts have exonerated bullies on free speech grounds. See First Amendment experts weigh in on whether schools can suspend students for social media activity by Nour Habib in the Tulsa World.July 23, 2017 1:26 am at 1:26 am #1322792MRS PLONYParticipant
Mama1, Oh this is terrible. I really feel for you and for your son. I hope some change happens.
Kollelman, thanks for breaking things down so clearly.
CT Lawyer, I’m glad we have an expert here.
Reb Yidd, you’re being a real voice of reason tonight, Thanks.July 23, 2017 11:13 am at 11:13 am #1322936
…more proof of what has become a sickening part of the new “Judaism”. The victim suffers double – beaten and then prevented from obtaining justice. Almost what the Gemara says we never do in court – “Lo’ke Um’Shalem” -one doesn’t get whipped for violating a commandment and also have to pay monetary damages – only one punishment. What happened to Lo Sa’amod Al Dam Re’eicha? Why are schools allowed to sit idly by watching abuse happen daily? Where is the justice?
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