Out Of The Mailbag: I Said No To Seminary!


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YWN story1.jpgDear YWN,

I am a Senior in a local mainstream high school, and i want to express a tremendous hacoras hatov to Yeshiva World News.

This seems pathetic, but true: the discussions in the “out of the mailbag” brought problems into public, erasing the confusion associated with so many problems in today’s world.

I am talking specifically about Seminaries [see letters HERE & HERE].

I will be staying home next year I”H, in addition to a large portion of my friends.

For me, that decision was made by my parents, long before i needed to worry about it. However, i had other friends who were still indecisive; they felt that they HAD to go due to the “pressure that society exerts on them”.

By bringing the topic of Seminary out of the closet and into public, people were able to voice their outrage over the absurdity of the seminary system, and their thoughts on how relevant it really is. That helped ease their consciences immensely; they were able to make the decision that was right for them, putting their fears aside.

I know it seems silly that they needed the reassurance of strangers to, but i think its in human nature to worry about what others think about you.

A big thank you, and may you continue to be the bearer of only good news! may we be zoche to see tomorrows headlines of the coming of Mashiach!


  1. The seminary system is not “absurd”. Its just absurd for the families that can’t afford it. Its an experience and those that go to Israel benefit tremendously from it. You’re not more special if you stay home.

  2. Seminary is still good for some girls and serve a purpose for those that are serious about their learning. It is certainly not for everyone but let’s not say that it’s not for anyone.
    The only sad part are the prohibitive costs involved. Scholarships are availible if you apply early enough.
    Additionaly, I hope that there will be shabbatons and inspiring weekends for the girls that remain in the states.

  3. I once hosted an individual that many consider to be the “father” of Israeli seminaries. I asked him two questions:
    1. What did he think of the cult-like atmosphere in some seminaries, and
    2. What advice did he give people who were opening new seminaries about what tuition to charge.

    In response to the first question, he said that he used to write speeches for a certain United States Senator, and he remembered that his research determined that “cult” is a simply a word that has no real definition, which people use to disparage whatever they don’t like.

    In response to the second question, he said, and I quote, “I tell them to charge the maximum that the market will bear.”

    So if you want to put your daughter into these people’s hands, go right ahead.

  4. #2, I think she’s referring to sem in general. A fine option where this a large local chevra and good night sem/steady shiurim available. Not the case out of town where, even if a proportion of girls aren’t going to E”Y, they’re still out of town in sem somewhere.

  5. I have many friends who had “no choice” but to send their daughters to an EY seminary at a tremendous cost, which they could not afford. The peer pressure is tremendous. BH my 2 older daughters said no. BH my youngest daughter still in HS says no.

  6. To # 3 “luv2hack”; your name says it all. You love to hack. If she had said that the system is not absurd you would have commented that indeed it was absurd. The fact is that whether one can or can’t afford it the tuition, aside from the other ancillary costs does seem to be very high.

  7. welcome to the club! i didn’t go to seminary either- and boy, it was considered scandalous.

    i went to a real BY, and i proudly consider myself a BY girl, and being that i was always studious and always striving for growth, every one of my teachers tried to convince me to GO otherwise i “Wouldn’t grow to my potential, would end up getting pulled down, etc”

    let me tell you something.
    how much you grow ANYWHERE is up to you. i personaly think that of all the years, i “frummed out” the most the year that i DID NOT go to seminary!

    don’t let people tell you ur crazy, ur doing ur neshama a disservice, yadda yadda yadda.
    Boruch Hashem now it’s getting more and more acceptable not to go, so I”H u won’t have to fight as big a tide as i had to.


  8. Absurd is a strong word. Spending $25,000 for your daughter to go to Eretz Yisreol even if you can afford it is only absurd if the reason you are doing it is due to the pressures and fears of Shidduchim should she not go. I married a wonderful girl who did not go to Seminary in EY. She graduated BYA in NY and now 19 years and Bli Ayin Hora 8 great children later, we have no intention of sending our daughters (2 presently in High School) to Eretz Yisroel. They will still find their Shidduch and IY”H it will be easy and the right one for them. How do I know? Easy – Teffila and believing only in the RBS”O. I am not worried about the “system” even though i am sure many comments will fly in saying I should. If we raise our children properly, if they are Baalei Middos, if their parents and siblings do the Ratzon Haboray then there will be another family out there with the same interests that want their son to marry such a girl – EVEN IF she didn’t go to EY for seminary. I’ll take my chances in only believing in Hashem and not being controlled by the system.

    PS – my wife spends quality time with our daughters teaching them how to be a great mother and special spouse, qualities that will certainly help them long term more then another Ramban or Yalkut.

  9. Seminary should be banned by the rabbonim!! This will save alot more money than the Takonos made regarding weddings. A frum girl should not go overseas away from home. Kol kvudah bas melech p’nemah. The idea of girls going to school as Sara Schnierer institued was a B’deved. She definitly wouldn’t approve of another year of school far away from home when there are very good seminaries localy.

  10. I definitely love to hack but as someone who went to seminary in Israel 3 years ago, this is something I definitely believe in. I think mostly EVERYONE would benefit from a year in Israel provided they are in the right seminary. So the deciding factor that I believe should be is whether or not you can afford it.

  11. it would seem to me that given the current economic crisis, and the great difficulty that roshei yeshivos, etc. are having with fundraising (as reported by YWN), any girl (and her parents, mechanchim, etc.) who REALLY cares about limmud hatorah should similarly refuse to go to seminary, instead insisting that her tuition should go as a donation to a yeshiva/kollel.

    similarly, all of the seminaries who pride themselves on producing girls who will support their husbands kollel lifestyle should shut their doors until further notice, and instead, their administrators (who are clearly able to raise lots of $$ via tuition) should raise funds for the yeshivos/kollelim that are struggling. this would show that these people/institutions truly value and support the torah lifestyle!!

    oh, and yasher ko’chech to you, letter writer!!

  12. People yell “soro shnierer” when they defend seminary, they fail to realize she started the concept of an elementary school for children! Not learning torah in-depth!
    The seminary that she founded in warsaw was specifically to train teachers for the new school system. Compare the % of seminary grads from then who are teachers, to the % from present day seminaries. There is simply no reason for girls to learn all of the things they do, and the things that are deemed nessecary should be taught in HS.

  13. At least one good thing will now be the result of this rotten economy – less and less people will be sending their daughters to seminary. And I believe this “movement” will continue to grow. The young lady who posted the letter is quite correct – there IS strength in numbers. Now that so many of us have lost our jobs, seen our retirement funds disappear, and are faced with financial distress, Rachmana nitzlan, how many people can seriously afford this extravagance? (As if they could have afforded it before.)

    As more people see that their daughters turn out just fine and get respectable shidduchim after not having gone to seminary, seminaries will revert back to being what they always should have been – an option, not a neccesity.

    That seminaries exist is not a crime; That high schools and teachers make girls feel anxious, restless, and worried sick about getting in, and not frum and worthless if they don’t go is heinous and unconscionable.

    I’d be curious to see enrollment numbers for the upcoming year.

  14. It’s simple. Only rich people should go to Seminary in EY. People should lives within their means. Isn’t that one of the most improtant hashkofos we can teach our children?

  15. I think people are overgeneralizing. This girl did a great thing in not giving in to social pressures, but for some it may be a good thing to go- I don’t think anyone will debate that. The problem is when the soul (not a typo) reason for going is to get a Shidduch- if enough girls (who couldn’t afford it or felt it wasn’t for them) didn’t go, it wouldn’t even be a factor! So while it’s great that she did this, I think people should think twice before knocking the entire system.

  16. Certainly I’m not speaking for anyone else, but I will say that my daugher’s seminary experience enhanced her life in ways that 12 years in BY never did. I’m not saying it’s the fault of anyone, BY or her. But I am saying that we shouldn’t make generalizations. You know, “different strokes for different folks”. Why should boys have the opportunity to learn post-HS at great expense to their parents and many times, in-laws, and girls shouldn’t also have an opportunity.

    There are some great seminaries stateside, but for most of them, their focus is on producing BY teachers.

  17. Dear “Mailbag,”

    I’d like to take the opportunity in thanking you for bringing important topics to the front.
    In the goyishe world, lehavdil, parents have just 2.3 children because they have to save money for college. We should be proud of our large families and say no to the extra cost of seminaries.

  18. For the record I am proud to say that 2 of my daughters went to Sem in Israel and really appreciated it, you want to know why? They contributed to half of the cost. They wanted to go so badly and since they spent a lot of their hard earned money (from babysitting etc.) on the cost of sem they really appreciated the year. Maybe we have to stop spoiling our children, and teach them the value of hard work.

  19. I’m speaking as a seminary graduet. Yes there are wonderfull seminaries in America but there is no comparing that exprience to the one in Eretz Yisroel. I have a sister who is in 12th grade and there are no seminaries that she wants to go to and she is really thinking of not going at all. She said why should she go becuse everyone else is? But i don’t think anyone has the right to put down seminaries who for years have been putting in so much to put the icing on the cake and making our girls the best they can be. Yes if you can’t afford it then don’t put yourself in dept. But all because you can’t afford it is no resone to make anyone else feel bad for wanting to go to sem as long as they are going for the right resons!!

  20. …at the same time…It is worthwhile to consider whether BOYS should be learning in Eretz Yisroel as well. Years ago, a bochur who was matzliach in a yeshiva would remain there. The “join the navy see the world” attitude along with the necessary PERKS is just wrong. It’s about time to insure the “Rebbe – Talmud kesher. It’s about time to keep boys that are learning in the same U.S. yeshiva.

  21. why is sem so terrible?! my parents can afford it and think it’s very important, so we go. (even if we dont want to go we have to).

  22. “pressure that society exerts on them”. ********This is the true PROBLEM, playing the game called ‘follow the leader’ is fun and exciting at recess time during grade school. Following the leader (?) or performing for the sake of society is an open door to mental instability. We need to educate children and adults to set standards and make decisions that work for them and solely for them.
    Just as we would never start taking ‘medicines’ prescribed for a neighbors health condition, why in the world should a decision be based on society’s gauge.
    In addition, spending time in Eretz Yisroel traveling through the holy land, meeting the remarkable residents who have settled the land, davening at kvrei tzaddikim, learning and giving chizuk to our brothers is an OPPORTUNITY of a lifetime (which has nothing to do with seminary).

  23. As a father of a daughter who did very well in seminary, I think it is tremendously important to find the right match of seminary and young woman. Some girls are looking for the less academically demanding seminaries, and others want those which have a certain hashkafa, and still others want text-oriented seminaries that put demands on the students. My daughter went to one of the latter seminaries, Michlalah. I thought that was a tremendous choice for her because I had met many Michlalah alumna who had superior midos, excellent learning, and who after seminary became strong leaders in the community. I don’t think she got the typical brain-washing of some seminaries which try to steer students into marriage to a kollel student for not less than 3 years. Instead, her brain got exercised, and she’s turned out great. And the price was about half of that of a college.

  24. I went to seminary in Israel last year. It is already almost Chanuka time, so you can’t say that I’m still on a “high.” Seminary was amazing. You get tons of experiences, hashkafa, skills, knowledge… all in one year. The “cult” that is posted- there is no such thing. On the American side, it looks like the seminary is a cold uncaring place. But that all changes on the Israeli side. I wished I could have had a second year! The money is a big issue, and if you really can’t do it, no peer pressure should force you to. But if you can somehow pull it together, it is very very worth it. You can’t say the experience is stupid just because you can’t afford it. And please don’t make generalizations. Different people make different seminaries.

  25. I went out with a girl that went to a Seminary in Cleveland. I aksed her why she didn’t go to a Sem. in EY. She didn’t answer correctly. I then a few months later when out with a girl that went to seminary in EY, and she was molded better, and had good answer when dating. Now, we are married with a son.

  26. Seminary’s are amazing for those who can aford them. I think that when the girls go out of peer preasure then thats absurd. You don’t gain from the experience that way and you just put a tremendous strain on your parents. But however,i know many girls who go for the experience stam,and they come back only singing praises. Rabbonim don’t need to ban seminarys, but I think that the seminarys should ask the parents first if this is afordable for the family. If no then the girls shouldn’t be accepted, and there are pleanty of things girls can do. but please. stop bashing seminarys

  27. There are many girls coming from kiruv type high schools that only a sem in EY brings them to a level that’s difficult to acheive by going to a local sem. The fact that they are removed from their community and friends and are living in the inspiring atmosphere of EY enables them to grow in ways that would be extremely difficult back home. Those that work in Kiruv cannot emphasize enough the value of EY sems.I know that most of the responses here are referring to totally B Y girls but many of the students in mainstream sems come from Kiruv type yeshivos. Also many BY students would gain a lot to leave their friends as well.The only factor should be the spiritual growth of the students and not social (shiduch,etc.)reasons but there are many that EY Sem does just that.

  28. I went to a BY seminary in EY over 30 years ago and it was the best year of my young life. the experience, the learning , friends, being in E”Y. there really is nothing like it. we were fortunate to be able to send our children, yes, a good education is expensive, they helped with some of the expenses. their experience as well was wonderful!there are no ny seminaries that are comparable. if money is an issue, i have heard of people getting scholarships for a large portion of the tuition. if it is possible, i say, definitely do it- find the right sem. for you and have a wonderful year!

  29. Seminary is not for everyone! There are plenty people who grow from the experience and there are plenty people who go down the drain from the year in eretz yisroel. Just because a person didn’t go to seminary for whatever reasons, doesn’t necessarily mean they are not a true bais yakov girl. I know of a person who went to a more modern high school and did not spend the year in eretz yisroel and she is shtarker and much more sincere then any bais yakov girl. If only people would start to look at a person by who they are as an individual and not by a piece of paper or what seminary she went to, not only would there be less superficial people in the world, but also maybe a few more shidduchs will be made! It all has to do with how much motivation one has-If a person wants to really grow in yiddishkeit then with or without the seminary she will grow!
    PS Don’t let the peer pressure suck you in, do what is best for yourself! If my message will have reached out to at least one person, it will haven been worth while to write this!

  30. What exactly are the hashkofos that girls are learning in EY that cannot be learned here? What have they been doing the first 18 years of their lives? Isn’t it proper to instill the haskofoh of living within your means? I wonder if the Seminaries teach that? Does running around to all the flaffel shops in Geulah and tiyulim in the Galil and Negev constitute experiencing Yishuv Haaretz? What is meant by a great year in EY? Does it mean a year of freedom away from home? Also, has any husband ever asked his wife for pshat in a Ramban? The whole Seminary EY “experince” if you give it any critical thought, other than mindless platitudes, is much ado about nothing.

  31. Posted: “The seminary system is not “absurd”. Its just absurd for the families that can’t afford it. Its an experience and those that go to Israel benefit tremendously from it. You’re not more special if you stay home.”

    Please, people, families are “who” or “those whom,” they are not “thats” or “its.” The above would be more correct if written as “”The seminary system is not ‘absurd.’ It is just absurd for those families who can’t afford it. Seminary’s an experience and those who attend it in benefit tremendously. You’re not more special if you stay home.” I would add: You also are not more special if you go, you just have one more experience in life.

  32. As someone who spent a year in EY i have to say that it truly was one of the greatest year of my life and definitely the best experience i ever had, one that can be duplicated anywhere, even in seminary in the US. The hasfkafa and learning aside, just spending a year in the holiest place in the world learning who you are, growing, becoming independent and spending it how you see best fit is an oppurtunity that can not be fathomed unless you experience it yourself. However, it most definitely is expensive so if the year will put you in to severe debt then fine, dont do it but if it is do-able t hen it defintiely should be done. I try to think what i would be like now without spending a whole year there and i cant imagine it. Going on vacation there or spending even a summer there is not comparable to spending a YEAR there. there’s something to the fact that you have a whole year there on your own to become who you want to be!

  33. #37 – Adar2 – I agree with you wholeheartedly. We used to take girls as Shabbos guests (another discussion perhaps?) from two seminaries:
    1. girls coming from MO homes who really wanted to grow;
    2. girls from one of the ‘finest’ seminaries – you know, the type your daughter didn’t get accepted to

    I have to tell you that it got to the stage where my wife simply refused to continue taking girls from seminary 2. She got sick and tired of their condescending manner; anorexic eating habits, and general lack of good middos. The girls from seminary 1, on the other hand, were a pleasure to have, and many came back again and again.

    So, yes – for Seminary 1 girls – if it’s doable, sem is a great option. For sem 2 – you’re better keeping little Miss JAP at home and ironing out the creases.

  34. I went to seminary and it changed my life (for the good). It was definitely not from the Chumash and Navi that we learned, but more from the hashgafa lessons and the experience of “living” in Eretz Yisrael. I think that for a serious (as in: not party hearty) girl, Eretz Yisrael can make an amazing hashpa’a. The challenge is to let the girls come to Eretz Yisrael AND give them the hashgafa without charging a fortune or concentrating too much on the academic subjects. Instead of just bashing seminaries in general, let’s see if there is some way that we can change the system. BTW, I’m not saying that seminaries in the US, England, etc. are not a good idea. But we all know that Eretz Yisrael can do amazing things. (Again, I’m talking about a serious girl, not someone who spends all her time on her cell phone or on Ben Yehuda.)

  35. come on #33 give me a break to think that the girl you married only ‘answered’ well when dating because she went to israeli sem get real!!!!

  36. IMHO its a crime that BOYS go to e’y at 18 right after HS. They need to stay and develope a kesher with their Rosh Yeshiva

    Oh and on the subject of Sem, my dad could NOT afford it but my sis had to go (for all the right reasons)and benefited tremendously and I wouldn;t of had it otherwise so we all chipped in so she could go

  37. Even though I am one of the fathers affected by the Sem phenomenon, I’m getting a bit tired of the topic.

    The bottom line remains simple: As long as sem in EY continues to be perceived as something so mandatory as to force parents to lose sleep over how they will afford it, that will in itself, be evidence that we continue to have a problem on our hands. Only when our graduates become mature enough and we parents become secure enough to just say “no” to something we can really afford, will we have made any progress.

  38. to the original letter writer: are you referring to sem in general or just E”Y? Because if the former, that’s a whole different thread than this has become.

  39. So basically the writer exchanged one type of peer pressure for another.
    She didn’t get over her need for public approbation, she still needs it, but now that a bunch of anonymous cranks on Yeshivaworld are “supporting” her, she can duck the pressure she used to feel from her friends and teachers, and stay home.
    Honey, you’re not cured, you’re still sick and unable to make a decision for yourself.

    The topic itself is debatable, with good points and dumb ones being made, but this high school is still the same person, making decisions based on other people.

  40. Every time someone mentions seminary it becomes a sem bashing event. I am trying to understand this phenomena. My personal experience in seminary was life altering. I come from a special home, went to a very good high school, went to seminary and changed my entire mindset and attitude. I saw beyond all the limitations that NY and High school set for me. I learned in seminary to think for myself, to believe in myself and to strive for heights I never knew existed. I got a Rav who is now is for the most part the Rav of my husband who is a fine Talmind Chachom who looked for and never found a Rebbe when he was learning in the center of Torah in America, Lakewood. My husband and children help me host, girls from seminaries very often, It is an incredible experience to follow the journey of many of those girls through the hallways of self awareness and self inspection, to newer and greater perceptions, and changes in thinking and acting. My life would not be what it is and so is true for many others. My parents were B”H able to pay tuition even though it was hard. They WANTED to, I offered and used my own savings for ALL my spending during the year. My parents still say that they would have spent double if they would have known the outcome. Of course there are also silly immature girls who should be at home, mind you in handcuffs and not running around Yerushalayim OR anywhere else for that matter.
    My seminary wrote a letter attached to the application seven years ago telling us that sem is not for everyone and we should think twice before applying. The letter also said taht if this is too much financial pressure on your parents then you should not send in your application. I asked and was told that they still write that same letter every year.
    I cannot speak about all principals but if you would knew mine you would NEVER suspect him for one minute as being an opportunist business man when it comes to chinuch. So please stop the bashing. Just be responsible and know if you should go, or if your daughter should go and don’t feel like if it is not good for you then it is not right for anyone!
    Sorry for the long Drasha.

  41. Working hard (57), that could have been my letter, except that I went to sem in the US and was still similarly inspired.
    Take a kid who, if she was from NY, could go to a vocational program by day, and solid night sem program by night. What are the options for such a girl “out of town”? I’m talking about a girl who is not college material, not alts frumkeit but academically, who is a real bas Yisrael but the Lakewood sem is not for her. Are there any good dorm sems on the east coast for her?
    If they are there, do the PR, network with all the BY’s across the country.

  42. #55, good point. It doesn’t seem like this writer has really freed herself from anything; she and her friends just have now the widespread approval they needed to be comfortable with their decision.
    No offense, but that’s either something that should come from within, or Da’as Torah (as with questions that a Rav should be consulted on.) YES, approval is a basic human need, but one should be DEPENDANT on it! Why do you think Avraham was called HaIvri?! Let me tell you, it wasn’t because he was going with the flow and not making waves.
    So if you feel sem will help you, go! If you think you already have everything you need for life and sem would be redundant, DON’T go! In any case, why do people feel the need to put down the other side to validate themselves? This is also why the “Well I went/didn’t go/went partime and I came out all right” posts are, no offense, useless. If we were all like you- excellent! You’re right, we could all do what you did, too. But we are all different, and so we are all going to need to do different things.
    On that note: yes, there is peer pressure. As evinced by this letter, the pressure is actually beggining to run both ways.
    Everyone, listen please! The decision whether or not to go to seminary is an intensley personal one. Everyone’s got to decide for themselves. So, good luck with the pressure, but make the decision based on what’s good for YOU, not based on what ‘yennim’ think, do ect.
    And yes, there are people who run seminarys as cash cows, and that is unfortunate; but if you feel the you will benefit go! If they’re charging tuition based on what the market will bear, well, then either the market has to stop supporting such prices, or set a bar, but in any case, get your money’s worth!

  43. ok..so i just spent the last hour reading over all the posts and ya know what..im finding this whole discussion a little insane. I went to a BY seminary in Israel 3 years ago and i cannot even tell you how much i gained and grew from that experience.The decision to attend seminary or not should not be discussed out in the open, it is for each family alone to come to a decision together. I understand that seminary is costly and cannot be afforded by all but that doesnt give anyone the right to make a flat out statement that the rabbunim should assur all seminaries in israel..how dare you say that ( i dont remember what number post that was but i read it somewhere on the page)”Erets Yisrael Michakim” theres something about spending a year in seminary that one cannot gain anywhere else in the world, being able to daven at the kosel whenever you want, visiting kivrei tzadikim as often as once a week, walking through the streets of geulah, mea shearim and building long lasting keshers with the most outstanding teachers. Basically what im trying to say is, i understand that the ability to go to a seminary in israel might be considered a luxery but its a wonderful thing and girls gain a lot from it and again, just like boys are allowed to go and learn there, why should girls be any different. the idea of going to seminary is a private decision that parents and children should make together and not half of the jewish population posting on yeshiva world…

  44. Kudos to this young woman for not responding to peer pressure. My own daughter happens to be in seminary in cleveland and is very happy. #33 I would like to know what the answer is as well as everyone else, beause there is no right or wrong answer. This is a desicion that is differnet for each girl and her family. As jews we are distinguished by our ability to stand out from among the nations. This girl is just doing what any other jewish girl should be doing. Hatzloche to everybody that has to make this desicison.

  45. Many of the comments re sem in EY deal are too general. Not all sems are the same. Parents sending their daughters should educate themselves as any other good consumer. If money is an issue (for whom is it not?) then know if you are being charged a fair price. Know if the education provided is worth the money. There are many different sems offering different programs. Three meals a day or not? That should be reflected in the price of the sem! Class sizes? One teacher lecturing to sixty students, a class of thirty or seminars of 15? That should be reflected in the price. How many hours a week of classes in the sem? Four hours a day plus homework? Eight hours a day with teachers? Are teachers treated fairly. Do they have a pension plan or disability insurance? Are they paid salaries 12 months a year or only hourly for the hours they teach? Does the sem provide scholarships? There are sems that do. Why should you have to check all these points? If you are spending a lot of money and suspect as some do that it is just enriching some sem heads, check the facts. If you can afford it send your daughter to a sem that is most wisely spending your tuition dollars on your daughters education. Please dont tar all sems in EY with the same brush. I agree with the comment that mentioned the courage of the Gerer Rebbe in limiting prices of weddings. Why is the outcry only about Sem which after all is Torah education. Where is the discussion of wedding prices, Pesach in hotels, $2500 sheitels and the like which are also often serious burdens on a family economy. Summer camps for young children may be neccesary but why shouldn’t sixteen and seventeen year olds work in the summer? Many people are living beyond their means but lets not blame only the seminaries in EY for all our economic problems. Savings on Torah education should be the last measure not the first if times are difficult.

  46. i think every one should go to seminary and yeshivas in e’y come on where else do you get to do nothing most of the day on your parents expense hang out in geula or town checking out guys or girls , especially on Fridays and motza shabbos because that’s what many people actually do.or take weekends off and go to netanya to the beach or other random moshavs for shabbos doing things teens would never consider doing back home. basically what i am saying is sending a child to israel is like telling them to go have a good time and no one is watching. speaking from a boys perspective the best learning i ever had was back home in good old USA under my rosh hayeshiva

  47. 62, good point that boys can also shteig in the states.
    But you know, kids can get in trouble in the US too, and they can get in trouble even when living in their parents’ homes. Our investments so far have reaped pretty good dividends, but we evaluate each of our children.

  48. The truth is everyone knows seminary is not about being mechanech the girls it’s about making money!!
    most of it limaseh is a waste of time. the best thing a girl gains being in e.y. is the fact that for the first time she is away from mommy and daddy.

  49. Interviews are going on right now. How’s this for a smart question: All these 90’s on the transcript-are they here because you work hard or you’re smart?! Do you remember this B+ on your 11th grade report card?! I guess the interviers need to see how poised and witty the young ladies are. These are real questions-one week old. And we wonder why our children experience panic attacks??
    With all the talk of a hurting economy why haven’t the gedolim made a takanah yet about not spending that exorbitant fee for sem? Maybe 12th grade would not be a wasted year if girls chose to start working or attending a half day program.