Budget Crisis! Bais Yaakov of Boro Park Cannot Open Yet This Year

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  • #657990
    gavra_at_work
    Participant

    AZOI.IS: So you are telling me that these parents had no expectations to pay tuition (“The school is located in an area where parents were by and large not encouraged to seek higher education”) or have the ability to educate their own children, yet still we (as the frum world) want these children to have the Jewish Education as an absolute requirement that their parents are unwilling to provide?

    PERHAPS (I am not a Posek, and I know this is strong, but) these children have halachic dinim of Yesomim (one whose parents are not willing to take care of their own children) and SHOULD be supported by the community?

    Does anyone else agree with this assessment?

    As for Joseph: It is quite a bit more than that by me (without getting into too much detail), and as I do not have anything to do with Hanhala, I can not give numbers as you did. I imagine there are tuition breaks as well, or perhaps they do work for the school; I don’t know.

    I got the numbers I used from AZOI:IS “I think the average is quite a bit under 400 a month, with many unable to pay that at the present time.”

    #657991
    Joseph
    Participant

    Feif, $13,000 per year, per child for elementary school? So a parent with 5 children in the school will be paying $65,000 a year to YNJ in tuition?

    #657992
    mepal
    Member

    GAW, I’ll try again. Seems like the mods didn’t like my first post, not sure why.

    I’d rather not get into the specifics, but the crowd by PPY is very different than the crowd in BYOB. In a community where there is only one school, the parents would be forced to send their child to the only available BY school. In areas like Brooklyn, that has hundreds of school, there’s one for every kind. There are other schools that might be more comparable, but many of them have a limit on how many new students they accept a year. (This I know for a fact)

    #657993
    squeak
    Participant

    Keep in mind that you are comparing apples to oranges when you compare a high-tech, high-quality secular education school to a Boro Park school that probably just shoots for meeting minimum standards in secular education. It costs more to have a good program.

    #657994
    kapusta
    Participant

    Gavra, think of it this way. I am not saying anything here that should be taken the wrong way, I am stating what the schools clearly differentiate themselves as being. BYOB calls themselves a Bais Yaakov because thats how they would like to be known. PPY calls themselves a Yeshiva because thats how they want to be known. Its not that one is bad and the other good. Its different, and its very unlikely for the parent body of BYOB to change to the parent body of PPY.

    *kapusta*

    #657995
    gavra_at_work
    Participant

    mepal & others:

    That is the idea of a “community” school, that accepts everyone from the area who is frum and willing to follow the rules. Perhaps this is what is needed in Brooklyn (and I thought Prospect Park was somewhat like that, but I seem to be wrong).

    Is there no school other than BYOBP within lets say, half an hour’s bus drive that would accept these girls? (parental preferences aside, I think they have lost their right to choose if they are unwilling or unable to pay for it). If not, you have a situation similar to that in Lakewood & (I feel) the Rabbonim of the community should get involved to force the schools to accept these girls (if needed).

    #657996
    mepal
    Member

    GAW, we’re talking about a TREMENDOUS amount of girls! Anyways, I think this discussion is kind of pointless being that the school will be opening anyways.

    #657997
    AZOI.IS
    Participant

    kapusta: “BYOB calls themselves a Bais Yaakov because thats how they would like to be known. PPY calls themselves a Yeshiva because thats how they want to be known. Its not that one is bad and the other good. Its different, and its very unlikely for the parent body of BYOB to change to the parent body of PPY.”

    At the present time both BYOBP and BLOPPY are p r e d o m i n a n t l y cranking out girls with an equally strong desire to marry learning boys, who choose not to go to college (Lakewood type). There might be slight differences, but definitely not huge difrences. My daughters’ Sem friends from BLOPPY say their BLOPPY classmates have very similar Frumkeit ideals, and therefore they are really pretty interchangeable.

    #657998
    Feif Un
    Participant

    Joseph: Yeah, pretty much. It’s getting out of control now, and a group of parents are getting together to try and do something about it.

    #657999
    kapusta
    Participant

    gavra,

    I dont think PPY is currently capable of housing so many students, but aside from that, it’s not that it’s not a community school. It just belongs to a different community. I don’t think its realistic for all those parents to conform to the rules of PPY. This is just my opinion.

    When you say BYOB is a community school, I think you’re right. But I can’t think of another school that would be considered one offhand.

    *kapusta*

    #658000
    kapusta
    Participant

    AZOI.IS, as a girl who just graduated high school, and as someone who considers myself to know schools pretty well, I would say that even though the end result “that they want to marry learning boys” is the same there are many other differentiating factors. One for example, dress.

    *kapusta*

    #658001
    gavra_at_work
    Participant

    mepal: The problem is next year when whomever bailed out the schoool (if it is bailed out) is unwilling to do so.

    Kapusta: If they want their children schooled, they have to follow the rules. They also have to accept the school they are given, if they are getting it as a gift.

    I liked the direction the thread was going in yesterday. Does anyone have any Psak or experience (from a scholarship committee) what should (or is asked to) be given up to pay additional tuition funds?

    #658002
    kapusta
    Participant

    gavra, you have a point that is very true, however, I would not want to be the one to explain that to 1,500 sets of parents. I’ll let you do that.

    *kapusta*

    #658003
    AZOI.IS
    Participant

    kapusta: as a girl who just graduated high school, and as someone who considers myself to know schools pretty well, I would say that even though the end result “that they want to marry learning boys” is the same there are many other differentiating factors. One for example, dress.”

    Does Prospect allow/tolerate uncovered knees and elbows, tight/sheer clothing, or bare feet?

    Please be more specific. I’ve seen many girls from both schools, and yes I agree there are differences, but BLOPPY girls who dress more modern, do so outside of school or after graduating. Some BYOBP girls also do so outside of school or after graduating.

    #658004
    mepal
    Member

    GAW, the school will not shut down. Take my word for it. Somehow, these things just dont ‘happen’. They will be helped out and they’ll get back on their feet.

    #658005
    AZOI.IS
    Participant

    GAW:”I liked the direction the thread was going in yesterday. Does anyone have any Psak or experience (from a scholarship committee) what should (or is asked to) be given up to pay additional tuition funds?”

    The unemployed and parents in Chinuch, have nothing left to give up, other than food.

    #658006
    kapusta
    Participant

    AZOI.IS, aside from not liking the direction this is taking. I think that question is avak lashan hara, and I don’t feel comfortable answering on a public forum.

    *kapusta*

    #658007
    gavra_at_work
    Participant

    BS”D

    AZOI.IS:

    Do you really believe that? And even so, perhaps the families in Chinuch are mechuyav to walk into Wal Mart (or any other hiring store) and get money to pay their tuition. (I assume unemployed are already trying) Perhaps they (both) are Chayiv to work nights & weekends, or give up their free summers, tutor, have their wife or children work, etc. Did they ask a Shaila?

    Perhaps they are chayiv to give up food, or at least certain types, as I have already pointed out. Maybe they are Chayiv sell their silver (if they have any), or move into a smaller apartment, and give the money to the school. That’s why the question is being asked.

    mepal: If you knew this already, why didn’t you say so in the first place! Then no one would have worried about it, and we would have known it was just a bluff to raise funds (sounds Assur, but what do I know, I’m not a Posek:). I certainly don’t have (or want) to think about it. It depresses me to think of all the people who expect me (or those like me, who are working) to support them.

    #658008
    gavra_at_work
    Participant

    kapusta:

    I believe the point is that “in general” they are similar enough that no halachos are bent/broken by going to either (as opposed to a Co-Ed school, which is problematic at best), so parents who have no choice can go either way?

    #658009
    mepal
    Member

    GAW; 🙂

    #658010

    1st off, all schools should be trimming back, even if they dont feel the crunch at this point. They probably will at some time and they should see the problem before it hits and prepare for it!!

    What is wrong with some of these NY mentalities? What is wrong with going to a different school? If the kids are frum, its non-coed, and hashkafa is similar- what is in a name??? Why be selfish??? A community school is a community school. If it feeds to the same seminaries, programs ect then wouldnt the girls be coming out similar? I heard kids call other kids “not frum” because they went to the ‘wrong’ elementary school. I mean- both schools were shomer shabbos, torah and mitzvos. The girls were tzniyus to the same degree. The kids from each school went to similar high schools. they just were not THEIR school. What is wrong with us? You dont see this in smaller communities where there are fewer schools. There, people are friendlier even though they might not be exactly the same.

    #658011
    areivimzehlazeh
    Participant

    I didn’t catch up on this conversation; however I’d like to talk tachlis:

    I just donated some $$ to the cause. I believe if every single CR member did the same, we can truly make a difference.

    Nefesh Academy has a flyer suggesting $180 per donor- and if 5,000 people respond, they can raise almost a mil ($900k to be exact). (If you can, please send there too.)

    For a school the size of BYBP, I’m not sure $1M can save them. However, I would imagine it can help get them out this imminent crisis. Correct me if I’m wrong.

    So, who’s next?

    BYBP’s address & phone #:

    Beth Jacob of Boro Park

    1371 46th St

    Brooklyn, NY 11219

    (718) 436-7300

    PS- I don’t have the time to do this in an organized manner- but if someone is willing to call & find out how exactly to go about this and to who’s attention we should mail, that would be great. Also, I’m sure they have a more convenient CC system, but I didn’t call to inquire.

    #658012
    gavra_at_work
    Participant

    areivimzehlazeh:

    Not to say it isn’t wonderful, but everyone should follow the halachos of Tzedoka before they decide to give here over anywhere else. If Halacha (for you) says give here, Kol Hakavod.

    #658013

    How about everyone support their local schools to the best of their ability? That way the money is localized and some schools wont be forced to close. I mean, we should support schools that are about to close but we should not forget those closest to our hearts. Arent we supposed to support local institutions before outside ones? So if you live within the vicinity of BYBP or go to the school or once went to the school- support it. Others- check out where you went to high school and see if they can use it. If you didnt go to a frum high school, (I would like to commend you right now for your frumkeit) look to see if one is closing and try to help them.

    If we each support our own high school, then we will be able to save a lot of them!

    #658014
    Joseph
    Participant

    gavra, if areivimzehlazeh had made the same appeal, but for a certain Jewish child who lacked the necessary funds to pay to continue his leukemia treatment rather than for BYOBP, would you have made the same verbatim response as above? If not, why not?

    #658015

    Joseph- I dont agree with your comparison. Leukemia treatment is necessary to save a child’s life. You (along with others) may think that his or her spiritual life is also necessary and falls under the same category in halacha. But there are other schools that can satisfy this same spiritual survival. In New York, nonetheless. If you were talking about saving the only frum school (shomer shabbos) in Montana, I would have to agree that saving that school should be high on my priority list. If a school in Brooklyn has to close, there are many schools that could take in the girls. It might not be as close or as convenient but they would still get their Jewish education.

    #658016
    Joseph
    Participant

    hss, I wouldn’t be so certain that 2,000 Jewish children could physically and/or logistically be absorbed in surrounding schools so close to the start of the school year. Even in Brooklyn. (I’m also not so sure that all the schools that could take some, would be on the same spiritual level.)

    And like you acknowledged, the spiritual life of Jewish children falls under the same category of Pikuach Nefesh as their physical life. Multiply that by 2,000 Jewish children.

    #658017
    areivimzehlazeh
    Participant

    IMHO Joseph’s argument is reasonable (and compelling).

    Furthermore, I’m not the town’s tzedakka halacha maven, but if a school in the next town was about to close (2,000 children to boot) and the school in your own town seems relatively stable (nothing is stable in these times), what’s to stop you from supporting the school in the next town?

    Why do some CR members sound so dead against this scenario? And keep pushing the agenda of giving to your own town first? Am I missing something here? This is a genuine question.

    #658018
    AZOI.IS
    Participant

    How much longer can BYOBP survive if most of its’ generous donors have moved to greener pastures, and BP’s current wealthy residents are by and large very Chassidish (and the bulk of those who remain, are those who have difficulty paying)?

    I can’t see the non- Chassidish population coming back to BP any time soon. One look at those populating 13th, 16th and 18th Avenues, tells all.

    #658019
    SJSinNYC
    Member

    While I think this is a sad situation, I am not necesserily compelled to give.

    I don’t believe that sending your kids to a slightly less religious school (I’m not talking about going from BYOBP to Flatbush or anything) warrants pekuach nefesh. If your kids can’t handle a slight change in hashkafa, perhaps the education wasn’t worth a penny anyway.

    Home schooling is always an option. Most of the parents of BYOBP are learned enough to teach their children. They could always pay the rabbonim directly for tutoring for the older, more advanced kids.

    Or, small groups can get together and CO-OP.

    I would rather donate to feeding people. If you don’t eat, you can’t learn. If you have something to eat, you can find a way to learn.

    #658020

    Joseph- There are so many schools within commuting distance that it should not be a problem. Did you look into schools in: Boro Park, Flatbush, New Jersey (I know its long but I have known people who have commuted longer), Long Island?

    As far as I know, convenience does not fall into the category of “pikuach nefesh” when regarding schooling children. It does not get priority if it is just convenience.

    I know people who commuted close to two hours to school. I know people who have boarded to go to any Jewish school because they lived so far away from the nearest Bais Yaakov or Yeshiva. They had little kids in their family, the parents had jobs ect and they still managed to do it. If there is a will, there is a way.

    Were you advocating for a school to be built closer to them? Why only when you or people you know are affected are you so worried?

    If the chasidish live in BP, and I assume they dont want the students from BYOBP, then why dont they help pay for some of the costs?

    #658021
    Joseph
    Participant

    hss, like I said earlier, the sheer number of students involved (2,000) makes it highly unlikely they can all (or even most) be absorbed into neighboring schools, regardless of any reasonable travelling distance.

    And, according to the Chofetz Chaim certainly, not schooling Jewish girls IS a pekuach nefesh issue.

    #658022
    ZachKessin
    Member

    A few points.

    1) IF BYBP has the 1800 or so students that I have read could those be absorbed into other schools, even if some of those ended up in schools that might be 2nd choice? I suspect that there are not that many free seats but I don’t know.

    2) NY Has a mandatory education law, you have to send your kids to some sort of school or homeschool.

    3) IF BYBP if this close to not bankruptcy is this a unique case or are many of the other schools in Brooklyn in the same boat? It will not do you any good to move a kid from school A to school B only to have school B close a month later.

    It is clear to me as an outsider that the current system is not stable, the question is what happens after. Some very hard choices are going to have to be made in the near future.

    #658023
    gavra_at_work
    Participant

    BSD

    Joseph:

    I don’t feel there is any problem with every single one of these girls being transfered to another school or homeschooled, if needed. This is NOT pikuach nefesh, and is not a priority, according to MY Rov. (I would ask him regarding the sick child; It is a halachic, not emotional response that is required) I wonder what your rav would say; Would you mind asking him over shabbos? And while you are at it, please ask what one is Mechuyav to give up in order to pay additional tuition funds if you are not paying “full” tuition INCLUDING IF YOUR WIFE SHOULD WORK (which you have never given a straight answer even though many have asked you since the CR started). We expect a full report.

    As a side note, I may have led people to a misunderstanding. Those who are in chinuch, teaching, etc. (which I am not) should get what is called “professional courtesy” and get a discount from everyone elses full tuition (no matter the financial status of the recipient), just like a dentist will charge another dentist less than the regular population.

    #658024
    anon for this
    Participant

    GAW, you refer to professional courtesy discounts that medical professionals give to one another. These discounts are not common anymore, and in cases where some costs are reimbursed by insurance, these discounts may be illegal. Nevertheless, I do agree that those in chinuch should receive a discount on tuition.

    In the community where I lived, anyone in chinuch/ kollel pays no tuition at all. Since their children comprise over one-third of the students in one school, this represented a significant tuition burden for the remaining parents, many of whom earn less that the rebbiem/ kollel members (because this was an “emerging community”, chinuch & kirv professionals were relatively well-paid compared to their in-town counterparts). I understand though that this is not a typical situation.

    #658025
    Joseph
    Participant

    gavra,

    You seem to have missed the point that it is logistically impossible to put all 2,000 students from one of the biggest frum girl schools in the United States into neighboring schools — especially so close to the school year. What exactly was the shaila you asked your Rov? Remember, the answer can only be as good as the accuracy of what was asked.

    Additionally, the tenor of your response to areivimzehlazeh, served to discourage <srtong>other Yidden from giving Tzedaka to the school. (Perhaps that was or was not your intent, but it surely was its effect.) Did your Rov pasken you should discourage others from giving such Tzedaka?

    And I completely agree with you people should take whatever additional steps to pay tuition. But what if even with such additional steps, including a working wife, if basic needs remain unmet?

    #658026
    gavra_at_work
    Participant

    Joseph:

    Saying “ask your Rav” and “follow Halacha” is always good. Don’t you want people to follow Halacha? Or do you want people to follow their emotions and not Halacha? I hope the former, as the latter would make someone (not you of course:) a Machti.

    It was not a Shaila, it was a speech to give to the local instituitions over those outside, even though they send desperate “the sky is falling” letters (I imagine the one sent by BYOBP counts, unless Mepal was right:) I don’t see how this is any different, especially noting that Mepal has stated the school will not close in any event no matter what. (Too Big to Fail?)

    Also please rephrase your last paragraph. I do not understand the question (you may have an extra “if”), and please define “basic needs”. That is getting to the heart of the question (see my post to AZOI on previous page).

    #658027
    Joseph
    Participant

    gavra,

    So to understand you correctly, are you saying that you are paskening regarding a specific situation from a speech your Rav gave?

    Basic needs are bread, rent, and tuition certainly. Do you help people needing these 3 essentials?

    #658028

    Wait a minute… lets try to do the math here. How many girls schools are in the NY area? You say there are 2000 kids in BYOBP…. The way it sounds is that there are 2000 kids in the whole school, not in every grade. There has to be at least 100 schools that are frum and are commuting distance from BP. so each school has to take in 20 students. That is 20 students from every grade… thats like 2 kids a grade!! And there are probably more than 100 schools, I am just not familiar with every school in the tri-state area. Yes, you can travel to New Jersey for school like some of you travel there for work. Logistically it can happen if need be.

    #658029
    gavra_at_work
    Participant

    Joseph:

    Yes, he said we should. If I had a safek, I would ask a specific question (such as the sick child).

    B”H, in America, there is MOFES, so all “basic needs” (except tuition, which is arguable) are covered by the government, to the most part. I do not plan on laying out the Ramabam or Shulchan Aruch on Tzedoka here (or any personal information), but the short answer is yes to all three.

    You are avoiding the question.

    Yes or No. Should someone’s wife work in order to help pay tuition?

    #658030
    gavra_at_work
    Participant

    havesomeseichel:

    Some of them are Zionist or at least not Anti-Medina, which Joseph (Leshitaso) holds is Pikuach nefesh to send to 🙂

    #658031

    GAW- I have an issue with your idea of a “professional courtesy”. This idea may be part of the problem why so many schools are having financial trouble. All tuition reductions should be based on financial need only. I have lived in an area where most of the kids in the community school were children of teachers. They happened to have the most kids and they had significant tuition reductions because of the fact that they were in chinuch. The school ended up closing. Why should teachers get a tuition reduction if they can pay? You stated that they should get it regardless of financial need.

    [By the way… was there a big commotion about a little school outside of NY closing here? be ashamed because although it is small according to NY standards, it was the ONLY school in the area. It had ALL the kids from the area in it. Some kids ended up in public school, others moved under great financial difficulty to other cities and a few made the 2+ hour commute each way to the next community where there was a school. This happens in many areas around the country all the time.]

    #658032
    Joseph
    Participant

    Should someone’s wife work in order to help pay tuition?

    The answer depends on the circumstances. There is no “one size fits all” response.

    Should someone’s children (over 16) work in order to help pay tuition? Why is that different?

    #658033
    gavra_at_work
    Participant

    Joseph:

    Yes or No. If you want, in general with a disclaimer.

    Also does that mean there are cases where the wife should?

    havesomeseichel: I’m not talking about free tuition, just a discount. I believe usual numbers are between 10-20%, depending on the profession.

    #658034
    Joseph
    Participant

    In general, wives did not work outside of the home. Sometimes they did or worked from home. Even today in many communities it is inappropriate for a wife to work outside the home (i.e. in many communities in Eretz Yisroel; in Chutz L’aretz amongst Chasidim and others; etc.)

    In communities where wives do work, it isn’t inappropriate.

    You didn’t answer my question about putting children to work, and explaining your answer. (This is in fact something that has been done.)

    #658035
    SJSinNYC
    Member

    Joseph, please address homeschooling. That would alleviate MOST of the problem because kids at BYOBP are from predominantly from frum homes. Wouldn’t that remove the pekuach nefesh? Also, parents could for coops – basically small groups with each parent teaching a few kids. No need to exchange money. Obviously that would only work if one parent was home.

    Yes, older kids should be working to pay tuition if their parents cannot. Scholarships (especially in hard times) should be given as a last ditch effort, not as a first resort.

    I have no problem with professional courtesy, provided it doesn’t harm the paying customers. Phone companies give thier employees cheap phones, tuition is not really different. Unless there are too many employees vs customers. It needs to balance.

    #658036
    Joseph
    Participant

    I support homeschooling where it is practical. It is easier said than done. Not all are capable of it.

    #658037
    gavra_at_work
    Participant

    Joseph:

    “In communities where wives do work, it isn’t inappropriate.” It it worth not paying tuition over it? Also for the “Yeshiva World” (where many of us are, as are the parents of BYOBP) the school should have the mothers work?

    SJS answered “Yes, older kids should be working to pay tuition if their parents cannot. Scholarships (especially in hard times) should be given as a last ditch effort, not as a first resort.”

    I agree, and know of yeshivos that ask for it, by telling the bochrim they have to do some sort of work for the yeshiva in order to attend (on scholarships).

    #658038
    Joseph
    Participant

    That is a shaila for a Rov to respond to a specific circumstance.

    #658039
    gavra_at_work
    Participant

    Joseph:

    Fair response. Asking a Rov is always good 🙂

    Have you ever dealt with this sort of question, as “what should be done to pay tuition”, and what are the responses (in a general, non-personal way knowing your response here should and will not be applied to any specific case)

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