170 children from the New Sephardi Talmid Torah in Jerusalem are without a building since the building they were in, a private building, was sold by the town, leaving them without a home. A few dozen of the children are learning in shuls and the remainder are without any solution.
The talmid torah is headed by Rav Aharon Refaeli and has been in existence for seven years. It is viewed as one of the leading talmidei torah in the sephardi community in the city and the building that was its home is located on David Yellin Street.
Since the new zman began after Pesach, the 170 children are without a building and educational framework. The administration of the school has turned to Jerusalem City Hall for assistance, asking to be granted permission to use an empty building located on Techakmuni Street in the city, but the city has refused, citing legal issues.
Kikar Shabbos News adds it contacted the city and has learned the legal department is not releasing the building for use due to zoning issues, that the building is allocated to be used for ‘social services’ only.
Deputy Mayor Avraham Betzalel, who hold the education portfolio, is quoted telling Kikar News that he is doing everything humanly possible to find a solution for the talmid torah.
According to Betzalel, there is a proposal to transfer the talmud torah to the building on Am V’Olamo Street in the Givat Shaul neighborhood, a proposal that is currently rejected by the talmud torah administration due to the distance from the Geula neighborhood and due to the area that is used as an industrial zone and offices.
A senior Shas official slammed the administration of the talmud torah, claiming that it was already known since Sukkos that the building would be evacuated without suddenly being thrown out and they should have alerted them earlier to permit them to assist.
(YWN Israel Desk – Jerusalem)