Should teachers/rebbis get a full time salary?

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    Schools are most certainly not a business.



    First of all, heartfelt thanks for your dedication to our children!

    Large metropolitan communities certainly have a much easier time of attracting hundreds of applicants. However, I’ve been told that due to the large number of kollel graduates seeking positions as rabbeim, many are willing to consider relocating to smaller communities as well.


    Joseph, if schools are not a business, they should be run entirely on donations.

    The little I know


    No one should need to hear or read a lecture on how different today’s world is from the earlier generations. But since you ask, something must be presented.

    The existence of yeshivos is a comparatively new phenomenon. The existence of selectivity for admission is also rather new. Expelling talmidim was hardly known before the present era. And chinuch was not a backdoor job for someone unable to find gainful employment elsewhere.

    Besides for these and many more differences, the world was also a different place. In the lifestyles among Shomrei Mitzvos, there was a palatable emunoh, in which HKB”H was part of the home. Yiddishkeit was not a competitive sport (frummer than thou), chitzoniyus was not a status symbol, and the true goals of the averge Yid was to be the best nachas ruach to Hashem. Children were imbued from birth with a sense of Yir’as Hashem and Ahavas Hashem. It is sad and tragic, but we can no longer say this for today’s world. There is louder volume of Kol Torah than ever before. We have taken kashrus to extremes unknown to our ancestors, and chumros that were once almost extinct have been revived to become commonplace. There is a thriving marketplace for segulos. There are daily albums of photos of luminaries meeting, performing various mitzvos and rituals, and a plethora of frum media. But the core values of Ahavas Hashem and Yir’as Hashem are harder to find. The pashtus that energized Klal Yisroel is gone, and the emunoh pshutoh that formed the unbreakable chain is deeply hidden. When a melamed taught children, there was an electricity in the air, and kids (yes, kids) wanted to learn and excel. There was a melamed or rebbe who invested his effort in this small group of talmidim, and individual connection was a priceless ingredient in this process.

    In today’s home, we need to examine what we teach. We need to buy only certain products in certain stores because of what the neighbors or the yeshivos might say. We need to dress up in ways that are foreign to our respective families, because of the dress codes yeshivos dictate for parents. We can go on and on, and it would be a great lecture if given by the right speaker.

    Today’s children are being raised differently. The rebbe of a century ago would be unable to handle this, nor would they the high ration of talmidim per rebbe.


    RY23: Yeshivos run more on donations than on tuition. Businesses don’t run on donations altogether.


    Phil-Unfortunately you have been misinformed. Trust me I am heavily involved in finding candidates for positions in smaller communities. The mindset of today’s kollel graduate is that the world ends on the outskirts of Lakewood. By the time most yungerlite consider getting a job, their children are at the age when it would be a very big sacrifice to move out of town. The numbers of kollel graduates willing to take these positions are greatly reduced due to a number of factors
    1. The mindset that one can not move to a smaller community unless he goes with a large chevra (kollel of at least 10)
    2. drastically reduced levels of idealism in yeshivos
    3. Lack of gedolim encouraging men to take these positions like in yesteryear (R. Ahron, R. Yaakov, R. Ruderman etc.)
    4. The polarization of the Jewish community
    5. Our Yeshiva bachurim grow up in a bubble and their ability to talk to someone non-frum has a culture and language divide a mile wide

    I have been to these schools. They have the children but no one to teach them. It is a tremendous tragedy which I only know of one organization trying to do something about it (not the one you are thinking of).
    If you want I can list the names of cities that are suffering


    “RY23: Yeshivos run more on donations than on tuition. Businesses don’t run on donations altogether.”


    While that may be true for many communities, I’m aware of at least one community where the majority of the school budgets are covered by tuition. They don’t have donors with deep pockets so the heavy burden is placed squarely on the shoulders of the parents.



    I appreciate your correcting me on smaller communities; please list those that are suffering from lack of qualified rabbeim.


    CTRebbe: Please share which cities.

    And how are those yeshivos dealing with it? And how are the out of town children in those yeshivos coping with this tragedy?


    Josrph says:
    : Yeshivos run more on donations than on tuition. Businesses don’t run on donations altogether.”
    This is true for the most part.however ehen you run s school or a yeshiva like a business then u most certainly rely on donations from the kllal as well as sending talmidim/talmidos out to solicit.


    How do they deal with it- they often hire Israeli shlichim who know Hebrew but are not very knowledgeable in Torah. Some cities hire those with hashkofos that do not accept all of the yud gimmel ikarim (i.e. Apikorsim). Some have local retired baalei batim volunteer time but they are not skilled or trained as educators. Some just have to cut their Judaic program or combine classes. Like I said, it’s not pretty.

    Not all of these cities are currently looking for Rabbeim but they have all voiced concern to me over the last year or two about this issue

    Allentown, PA
    Birmingham, AL
    Ottawa, ON
    Charleston, SC
    Louisville, KY
    Calgary, AB
    San Diego, CA
    West Hartford, CT
    Greensboro, NC
    Rochester, NY
    Seattle, WA
    Portland. OR
    Fairfax, VA
    Indianapolis, IN
    Jacksonville, FL
    Vancouver, BC

    These cities could use a principal

    Sharon, MA
    Syracuse, NY
    New Orleans, LA
    Palm Beach Gardens, FL
    Harrisburg, PA
    West Hartford, CT
    Charleston, SC

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