SED HEARD YOUR PROTEST: Important Open Letter To Yeshiva Parents About New York State Education Dept

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ט”עשת ,תבט א”י
December 19, 2018

OPEN LETTER TO THE YESHIVA COMMUNITY

We are grateful for the outcry of Klal Yisroel, protesting the new State guidelines. It is your chorus of concern that has brought the issue prominence. We must keep the pressure up. Your interest is what will bring hatzlachah in this battle for the heart and soul of our yeshivos.

You have protested specific aspects of the guidelines that would set the curriculum at our yeshivas, and mandate long hours of secular study. They want to evaluate which of our teachers are worthy of the job.

We are delighted that the NYS Education Department heard your protests and has taken back its demand for 7 hours per day of secular studies. We are certain that the community pressure and extraordinary siyata d’shmaya are the reasons for this retraction.

Much more work remains to be done. SED is still making unreasonable demands, including 17.5 hours a week of secular studies for the upper elementary school grades and is trying to undermine the independence of our yeshivos.

We want to impress upon you that this is all part of a bigger picture.

What is at stake is the autonomy of our yeshivos.

Are decisions about yeshiva curriculum, schedule, educational emphasis and hiring to remain in the hands of the Menahalim, Roshei Yeshiva and Vaad Hachinuch, or will they be dictated by the State Education Department and local school districts?

This is the issue.

Never in our long history in this medinah shel chessed have we experienced such an attempted intrusion into the independence of our yeshivos.

With your continued help, Klal Yisroel will be zocheh to the protection and preservation of the autonomy of our mosdos haTorah.

Rav Elya Brudny – Mirrer Yeshiva
Rav Yaakov Bender – Yeshiva Darchei Torah
Rav Yisroel Reisman – Yeshiva Torah Vodaath

PREVIOUS YWN ARTICLES ABOUT THIS TOPIC:

SHOCK: New NYS Guidelines Require Yeshiva Elementary Schools to Teach AT LEAST 6 HOURS A DAY of Secular Studies

TROUBLE FOR NY YESHIVAS: Schools Could Face Pressure Under New Rules

Satmar Rebbe of Kiryas Joel DECLARES WAR Against NYS Education Department [FULL AUDIO CLIP]

READ THIS: HaRav Yaakov Bender Slams NY Times Over Anti-Yeshiva Article Following New NYS Education Policy

YWN Speaks Up, The New York Times Backs Down – But Look What They Did Instead

HOW NYS BLATANTLY LIED: New York State Promised Yeshivas STEM Funding, Instead They Gave Them Regulations

WATCH: Member Of Moetzes, HaRav Elya Brudny Describes Threat To Chinuch With NYS Education Policy

WATCH: HaRav Yisroel Reisman Describes Threat To NYS Chinuch As DRACONIAN, OUTRAGEOUS, & IMMEDIATE

NOW THIS: Yeshiva of Flatbush BLASTS NY Times Over Photo; Demands Retraction & Apology

UNPRECEDENTED: HaRav Elya Brudny & HaRav Yisroel Reisman Write Joint Op-Ed In WSJ About New Yeshiva Curriculum Guidelines

DISRESPECTFUL: Roshei Yeshiva Met With NYS Education Commissioner; Were Given Assurances, AND THEN IGNORED

STARTING TODAY: NYS Begins Training Inspectors To Inspect Our Yeshivas! [BREAKING UPDATES]

(YWN World Headquarters – NYC)




9 COMMENTS

  1. Someone is lying here, according to SED the only grades involved were 7th and 8th. Elementary years weren’t included and HS was already mandated properly. The 7.2 hours for English was for 7 and 8th grade combined. Which equates to 3.5 hours a day.
    So did SED hear us like the letter claimed or was this one big understanding?

    QUESTION: How many hours of instruction are required per day?
    Based on the mandatory units of study found in “Appendix A”, Teach NYS informed NYSED that the new Substantial Equivalency Guidance requires at least 7.2 hours of instruction each day for grades 7 and 8. 7.2 hours far exceed the NYS compulsory education law requirement of 5.5 hours. Teach NYS informed NYSED of this inconsistency in the Guidance and requested an explanation.

    ANSWER: NYSED responded by email informing us that the language in “Appendix A” of the Guidance was not clear and would be clarified to explain that students are to receive such instruction by the end of grade 8.

    For example, two units of study for English language arts must be completed by the end of grade 8 (one unit in grade 7 and one unit in grade 8). Two units of study in English language arts are not required in each grade, 7 and 8. This pertains to all of the requirements, with the exception of library and information skills. What this means is that a school must only offer a minimum of 180 minutes per week (around 36 minutes per subject per day) of English, Math, Social Studies and Science for grades 7 and 8.

  2. You’ll lose the achdus factor when the only issue being argued is 17.5 hours a week vs. the 7 hours a day. Given that they presumably allow schools to count physical education and foreign language towards that, 17.5 hours is probably something many Yeshivas are already accomplishing.

  3. This is heartbreaking. We were not told the truth – and are still not being told the truth. The regulations themselves were always clear and the “7 hours” claim was never true. As Nutjob18 correctly noted, NYSED explained that Appendix A had to be clarified – not changed. The claim that NYSED “has taken back its demand of 7 hours” is just not emes.

    The rabbonim that signed this letter are three of the great mechanchim of our era. They are great, wise and learned men and gifted mechanchim. Somebody is misleading them. You have to wonder who, which will then tell you why.

    And why have we not seen this alleged “informal” clarification? Where is it? Why has it not been published by NYSED itself or, for that matter, by the Agudah? Something is very strange.

  4. The girls’ schools and MO schools are already in compliance with 17.5 hours per week. The core curriculum is already implemented in many schools and the state has always been involved in deciding curriculum requirements. The boys’ Yeshivas cannot comply with the required hours, being that they only begin secular studies at 2:00/2:30 pm. The Rabbonim or heads of our Mosdos should please explain what areas the state would be meddling in and to what degree. Most teachers, even in the Yeshivos should be able to present credentials, even if it is a certificate of completion of teacher training. Does the state, for example require a degree or not? Are they thinking of telling yeshivas who to hire or are they wanting our institutions to conduct background checks? Are they wanting Yeshivas to report abuse? We need to have everything spelled out clearly in layman’s terms so that people don’t start thinking that the issue is being exaggerated.

  5. @dovidfields – The only heartbreaking thing is that YOU were mislead by the fake haters trolling social media spreading lies. This was and is as real as it gets. Obviously, you didn’t read the statement by the Archdioceses of NY. I guess they also were mislead by the same people? 500 Catholic schools were all misled. LOLOL

    You mean Moster HIMSELF YMS after reading the policy said “7 hours?! That is way too much! That is more than Public school!”

    But The Rabbonim were misled. Mammish unreal how dumb some people can be.

  6. David.

    The only part I agree with you is:

    “The rabbonim that signed this letter are three of the great mechanchim of our era.”

    The abovementioned obviously, were seriously involved themselves and, do not need any interpretations or anyone’s input. Hence, I fail to understand where they were misled.

    Most supporting the State curriculum and Yaffed are just ex Chassidim, who are just out to blame thier own misfortunes on others.

  7. Agav, the gudlines say the 3,5 hours DOES NOT include physical education.

    What seems to be interesting is that although the SED is not communivating with the Aguda representatives, they ARE in contact with the OU. The OU still says there is a lot to be worked on, but at least they are working with them.

  8. NYSED Commissioner MaryEllen Elia was cursed by someone, at least this is what I was told. I really hope she repents , I mean what happened to this lady? Is she upset at something? jealous? immature? I’m so confused MarryEllen.