Open Letter to NYS Education Dept from Moetzes Gedolei HaTorah of America and Vaad Roshei Yeshivah of Torah Umesorah


We write on behalf of the yeshiva community of this State and its diverse educational institutions.

As religious Jews, we seek above all else to raise our families in the traditions of our faith. We all stand as one!

Our people have sacrificed so much over the millennia to preserve the institution of the yeshiva – the foundation of our faith.

We cannot relinquish control of the yeshivas that are the essence of our people. We cannot surrender control of our curricula. We cannot abandon to others the selection of our teaching staff.

Our religious requirements have not been adequately addressed. Our rabbinic leadership has not been properly heard. Our 300,000 pleas of our communities have not been given the attention they deserve.

Our people simply cannot abandon our religious values. With the help of G-d we will not permit it to happen.

(YWN World Headquarters – NYC)


  1. I think this perspective is wrong.
    Why cant we admit that Chassidish education is bad, but its not what most yeshivahs provide. Let Chassidish yeshivahs shape up and then none us will suffer. Chassidish education (of lack of it) has nothing to do with Torah. We can only win with Emes not with letters like this.

  2. folks its not about secular education their goal is to teach about alternative lifestyles aka toeiva and everything associated with it as a normal lifestyle. THAT is the goal not 1+1=2.

  3. I think it’s a bad look to paint this as an attack on Judaism as a whole. Secular studies are not forbidden and taking funding while not meeting the requirements for it is not a moral thing to do.

  4. @lakewoodbt – you may be right but if Chasidish yeshivahs teach what they are supposed to teach NYT and DOE would have a harder time starting this fight.
    @Covertcorgi – i agree.
    @Marxist – unfortunately Chasidim dont like to compromise and unfortunately Agudah joined them with this Krum letter.

  5. To Kach You write, Then stop taking state money that comes from OUR tax dollar!
    You are wrong and all you are doing is taking the NYTrashes talking points and making them into a fact. Yeshivos are entitled to various monies simply because they are a school. You get money for lunch, bussing, security, even for taking attendance. None of these programs ever hinged on the curriculum. Don’t make up new facts that never existed.

  6. To Covertcorgi
    Secular studies are not forbidden. How true, and the chasidishe mosdos teach what they deem appropriate. Nothing immoral about that. Besides money the government gives the yeshivos has nothing to do with curriculum.

  7. To Marxist
    This is why it won’t happen. After reading and listening to the pundits on both sides of the issue, the last few days, I really think people like Nadler, YAAFED, the NYT and their ilk are discussing apples and our side is discussing cucumbers. We aren’t even discussing the same issue. Nadler made a comment yesterday “some of the Hasidic schools were utterly failing.” People like Nadler look at marks and test scores. They look at the arts, science, and sports, as a crucial part of a student’s success. But if you ask the leaders of the chasidishe schools they will say “we pass with flying colors.” They will say like the statement Satmar gave “Our school hasn’t produced even one murderer” (end quote) Our bottom line is that we produce ethical, moral, upstanding citizens Our students can take what they learn in our yeshivos and use it to pursue careers in any vocation they desire. Satmar has shown with their business expo in June, that 5,000 attended, that their curriculum can produce some very successful entrepreneurs in all fields.

  8. Just vote Republican. The agudah is not out to help us. They ARE the problem. If they wanted to help us that would help educate people to vote Republican always ,including CHASIDIM and their “Rebbes”. Open your eyes. VOTE LEE ZELDIN

  9. This is something of a “game”. The real issue is that we as a community do not accept the standards of political correctness, and since we are un-WOKE, according to current political theory we need to be cancelled. As one non-Jewish conservative said, now “we are all Jews”. Given that we appear to be doing better from any neutral perspective that large parts of the secular community, there is little reason to take seriously their “complaints” about educational quality (note they aren’t offering to pay for the cost of secular instruction, as is done in many countries, and they certainly aren’t about to offer some assurance that if we can match the performance of the better public schools, we can be assured that a beard and pe’os will become common in the elite jobs on Wall Street or Silicon Valley).

    The motivation is to “cancel” us, and is not all that different from what Christians in Europe were trying to do for the last few millenia, or the socialists in Russia during most of the 20th century. We can to find allies, but we need to understand that we are dealing with bigots who wish we didn’t exist, and are looking for ways they can accomplish it.

  10. This has nothing to do with taking funding for all the ignorant commentators. this about a “right to education” under state law (no i am anti this law) and sending a child to a school not up to par would be considered criminal under the current state law. because as a parent you are not sending your child to school

  11. @ah yid – if you want funding, you don’t get to pick and choose what to teach and how much of it. If your students cannot pass minimal basic math and English exams, it’s a red flag that the subjects are not being taught or being taught poorly. It’s fine if yeshivot don’t want to teach them but then they can look for funding in a community that is seemingly insular until it comes to utilizing public welfare.

    @Baby Squirrel – Israel won’t stand for this much longer either and the welfare will be cut off or administrated with more and more strings.

  12. It is not true that this is a Chassidish yeshiva issue.
    The same is true of nearly all the Litvishe yeshivas in Lakewood and in E”Y
    It is the right of all parents to want an unadulterated chinuch for their children.
    Nothing wrong with learning Math and English – to the contrary, it is a good thing – but that can come later after the yeshiva education. With the learning skills they receive in yeshiva, it is very easy for them to pick it up very quickly.
    The issue is that we cannot allow the government to be involved in any way in our chinuch – period.
    And we are entitled to any and all government programs that we can receive – it is our tax dollars and we are as entitled as any public school student is.
    And “AhYid” is right on the money (pardon the pun) – all the dollars received by the yeshivas are due to gov’t requirements of these yeshivas. Otherwise they wouldn’t get a penny due to the religious issue.

  13. This letter is missing one point. It needs to include the fact that the frum community is a bloc vote. And we pledge to vote against any politician that supports this mission. If the state wanted to help yeshivos do a better job, they would. They are persecuting them with this bill. And they need to know that we will expend all efforts to oust these politiciasns from office. Yes, the Nadler and Schumer purim shpiel. masquerading as Yidden, will be over. May their retirements begin soon, and may they be replaced by those who are devoid of corruption.

  14. Baby Squirrel, I see the solution you propose is moving to Israel. By an interesting coincidence, right now in Israel, also before November elections, there’s a big commotion over the government wanting chareidi yeshivas to teach limudei liba, or core curriculum, in order to get government funding. Different location, similar fight.
    In Israel it was actually Chassidim (Belz) who agreed to the government proposal. The litvish rabbis protested and threatened to break up the religious party and not run together with them in the upcoming elections in November. This would have been a problem for Netanyahu in forming a right-wing government. He reached out to the grandson of the grand litvish rabbi in charge and brokered a compromise whereby he’d give chassidish schools lots of money even without them teaching core curriculum, and all the chareidim, litvish and chassidish, will run as one party, giving him a better chance of coming back into power.

  15. Its not only about the funding do u really not get it? There’s a clause that says schools that don’t meet govt equivalency will not be considered legit. Meaning the kids and their parents will be considered truant. And can be jailed. This abt freedom of religion in America. Trust agudah they understand the danger even if not all of you do..

  16. Where are so many people getting the bizarre idea that this has something to do with funding, and all a cheder has to do is turn down the funding and it will be free to remain loyal to the Torah? That is just a stupid and bizarre idea, completely without any source whatsoever. I don’t understand how people got it into their heads.

    This has NOTHING TO DO with money. A cheder could refuse to take even one penny from the government, not even to pay for a sheet of toilet paper, and it would still be in exactly the same situation. This is not dinei mamonos, it’s dinei nefashos; the government is not after our money, it’s after our children’s souls.

    The government wants to FORCE all children to be taught the subjects it wants, in the way it wants them taught, and to devote the hours it demands to those subjects. Even for those schools that hold there is nothing wrong with secular studies, they still must remain the tafel, not the ikar, and so they cannot be allowed to take up most of the day. And the details of what is taught must be kosher, the textbooks must be kosher, etc.

    But more importantly, these commenters who assert so confidently that “secular studies are not forbidden”, THAT IS YOUR OPINION. You are entitled to your opinion for YOU and YOUR children; you are NOT entitled to impose that opinion on those who disagree with you and on THEIR children. The holy chadorim that do not teach limudei chol, or that teach only a very limited subset, are doing so because that is THEIR view of what the Torah requires. And their opinion is no less valid than yours. Their rabbonim are a lot bigger talmidei chachomim than you are, and for all you or I know they may even be bigger talmidei chachomim than your rabbonim. And they hold it is forbidden, and are willing to go to jail if necessary to resist it.

  17. what ever happened to dinei malchuso dinei?
    and don’t tell me we dont have to follow it, because they teach such anti-judaic stuff. nonsense. math and science and history are not anti-judaic studies.

  18. The real truth is that the govt shouldn’t be supporting anything. ppl should pay for everything themselves. And taxes should extremely limited if at all. ppl should work and pay for what ever THEY want; not pay the govt to decide wht to do with it.
    govt taxes and social programs, including funding for ANY school, is PURE EVIL!!

  19. Chssidim???? Has ZERO to do with Chassidim.
    Rav Aharon Zatza”l was stronger about this position than most chasidishe rebbes in NY at the time (The Boyaner, Kapishnetzer, Amshinaver Zatza”l)…
    With the exception of the Satmar Rebbe Zatza”l…

  20. This is all hyperbole. Gedolei Yisroel especially from the Aguda and Torah Umesora have allways allowed for secular studys in High School. Many Agudah affiliated Schools administer the Regents exams. Under the Board of Ed rules if A high School administers the regents exams that school is recognized as being equivalent to the public schools.THere is no need to relinquish control of the Yeshivos. For many years it was the common practice in many High schools to take qualified licensed public school teachers to teach the secular subjects. This was sanctioned by many gedolei yisrael. So all this commotion from the Agudah and Torah Umesora makes no sense.
    Now Chasidish High Schools are a different story because they hold Limudei chol is forbidden completely. So I don’t know how to square that with NYS law.