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Unread 04-21-2016, 06:59 AM   #1
Majorthinker
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No Chabad schools.

Sooo

Where we live, there are the following:

1. Chareidi school, boys and girls separate, boys do not learn according to education ministry. Takes a lot of non-religious people, too, and I've heard some have television, sooo it's not *really* chareidi. That's the way things are...half the non-religious people here want their kids to have Torah values. The thing with this is, we don't *really* want our kids growing up with the standard chareidi value system. Personal shtick, maybe, but we have a right to our shtick.

2. Dati leumi school, also separate (but I don't think *as* separate - as in, same campus), goes according to misrad hachinuch, which is what we want. (Also here some kids have television...nu nu...)

3. Semi-chareidi school. What does this mean? It *aims* to be chareidi. BUT it has a lot of "weaker" kids who are there because their parents want the religious values - but aren't religious. (Also here they have television...kacha zeh...)

4. Mamlachti dati, which means boys and girls together, goes according to misrad hachinuch, big emphasis on health (which is a GOOD thing, halevai every school would because you have NO IDEA how bad the junk food issues are here). Much less religious. MUCH less. Probably off the list entirely, except for the fact that I like their curriculum. (um. Television obvious. Girls in pants, also during school hours. Etc. etc.)

5. A new "start up" school. They are opening a gan chova (kindergarten) next year and it is supposed to be super-chareidi. Smaller classes better academics. Sounds good, except: 1) Not sure if it teaches the curriculum, 2) they have all these criteria...father has to learn (formally) at least part time, no internet (we can't get rid of ours, because that's a big part of our parnasa at the moment), and who knows what else. Could we push in? Probably. Do we want to? Umm.....maybe not? (Talmud Torah. Aiming to be a "true" Talmud Torah, like is found in Jerusalem. Good thing? No idea.)

Now, what the other Chabadnikim do is send their kids half an hour away (half an hour between cities). Half an hour by bus. This is a big problem....because a) we don't have a car; b) we don't believe a 6 year old should be that far away; c) the buses there are very sporadic - you miss your school bus, you'll get there 3 hours late.

Basically, we haven't really found a school that we like. We *could* move half an hour away, but for several reasons, that's not an option at the moment.

Okay, I've spoken about this issue to *many* people in real life, *no one* has an answer for me. But more importantly - if you've heard me talk about this issue in real life, and therefore *know* who I am, what my name is, where we live....PLEASE let me know. PLEASE. Thanks. I debated opening an "anonymous" account for this but decided against it (משתמשת ותיקה, סוג של סגירת מעגל, וכל מיני דברים מטופשים מעין אלו). PLEASE don't make me regret that decision. Thanks again.

Hey, T613, what would you do?
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Unread 04-21-2016, 02:28 PM   #2
Tzemach
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Maybe ChabadTalk went live just for this question!

I live in a similar place (also in Israel), the closets Chabad school is over a 30 minute drive.

With my first kids, I knew about the Rebbe's insistence to send to Chabad schools, even when it was great inferior to (you can ask the Kramer's in Tverya about their story with the Rebbe), but it was a nisayon . Because we have a great Charedi school inside the city, and what could already happen to my kids if they stay local for a few years?

In the end, after hearing over and over about the Rebbe's approach, I enrolled them in the Chabad school, and drove them myself back and forth each day. I also didn't have a car, but I bought an old one for this purpose (it only cost about 5000 NIS).

The next year, I sent the kids with a taxi back and forth at a huge expense. The year after, we already had more kids in the community who were ready to join, and by now it's already a van with 15 kids and the costs went down considerably, though it's still around 2500 NIS total each month.

BUT, by now I can say that I don't regret it one bit. The kids are 100% proud young chassidim, aren't torn between different streams, and I think it was / is a very good investment, even if there were no clear horaos about it.
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Unread 04-22-2016, 10:14 AM   #3
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Actually, that thought occurred to me, too: Chabadtalk came back just in time, I bet someone here can help. Very cool HP.

We don't have licenses, either, though (aliya-related issues).vI think there was a van once, then a bus, and now I think there is nothing. But I will look into it.

Thanks for the perspective, we hadn't really thought of it that way. (Or we had, but didn't realize it was such a big difference.) I have to put some heavy thought into that.

***********

One thing that bothers me is all the shpitziness. Let's say a boy in the class reads Harry Potter, and we don't allow it. "But why not? HIS parents let!" And if the kid isn't in a Chabad school, you can just say, "Because we're Chabad and we do things differently." (Okay, bad example. I'm having a hard time thinking of good benign examples.)

In a Chabad school, there's more of a feeling that we're all the same, and therefore should be the same. "I want you to wear a sheitel like Nechami's ima." (Real example of a sentence said to me by my kid.)

Well, I don't think long, curly sheitels are tzanua - l'hefech, I think they're extremely prust. But Nechami's ima is Chabad, and my kid likes her kid, they play together every day in gan, and really, nothing I can say will undo the, "She's the same as you, why does she have a nicer sheitel?" and I'm not going to judge a preschooler by her mother's chitzoniut. (Plus, I really don't want to bash Nechami's ima - it's called lashon hara and can only harm any attempts at chinuch.)

The only way to change that perspective is if we manage to teach our kids that just because something has a hechsher, doesn't mean it's kosher. And that's really, really tough when everything around you has a "superb" hechsher. It's much easier when there's a visible difference - they're X, we're Y, we do things differently.

Not so easy when the difference is internal and not external. And like we all know, there are no guarantees. (Which, obviously, also means that ensuring an obvious difference does not guarantee a better outcome. Sigh.)

Okay, semi-unrelated question: If there were only two schools in a five-hour radius, where would you rather send your kid:
- chiloni school that teaches Tana"ch and derech eretz, but also teaches Zionism (real Zionism...not Livni Zionism...)
- chareidi school who, every yom ha'atzma'ut, burns the Israeli flag and makes a tekes out of it, the kids learn tons of Torah but hate every chiloni's guts?
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Unread 04-24-2016, 04:43 AM   #4
Tzemach
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We don't have licenses, either, though (aliya-related issues)
That's funny, initially I drove my kids with my American license, it's a grey area which I wouldn't recommend to others. Thankfully, converting the license to Israeli wasn't such a big hassle, even though it was a good few years since I made aliya (you can do "Hamara" which means that you only need to take another test in Israel. It's good idea anyway - it's much easier and fun to live in Israel with a car.

In cases where the schools were excellent, the Rebbe didn't need to insist on sending to Chabad. Those that asked for exemption were cases where the school was not in the best shape to put it mildly, etc. and there better alternatives locally.

Quote:
One thing that bothers me is all the shpitziness. Let's say a boy in the class reads Harry Potter, and we don't allow it. "But why not? HIS parents let!" And if the kid isn't in a Chabad school, you can just say, "Because we're Chabad and we do things differently."

...

Not so easy when the difference is internal and not external. And like we all know, there are no guarantees. (Which, obviously, also means that ensuring an obvious difference does not guarantee a better outcome. Sigh.)
As you finished off, there's no guarantees either way. I don't think that this technique is so valuable that it's worth keeping kids out of a Chabad school. There are other comparable techniques that probably work almost as well.

Also, this technique is more compelling when the kid senses that their parents would do anything to send to Chabad, but it's impossible (e.g. when kids are on Shlichus, etc.). But if he knows that other kids are going to Chabad, and he isn't, and then you tell him "we're different because were Chabad", it doesn't sound convincing. "We cut corners with the Rebbe's horaos (like sending to Chabad mosdos) when they don't seem to work for us, but we expect you the kid, to follow everything strictly".

The educational message of bending over backwards with immense expense to do the Rebbe's horah of sending kids to a Chabad school, gives the kids a powerful message of that values you hold dear. It's powerful because it's a concrete experience that the kids feel each day as they are commuting to school.

Quote:
Okay, semi-unrelated question: If there were only two schools in a five-hour radius, where would you rather send your kid:
- chiloni school that teaches Tana"ch and derech eretz, but also teaches Zionism (real Zionism...not Livni Zionism...)
- chareidi school who, every yom ha'atzma'ut, burns the Israeli flag and makes a tekes out of it, the kids learn tons of Torah but hate every chiloni's guts?
You probably mean a 5 mile radius?

I would take chareidi any day, it's much more authentic. I think the "hate" teachings can be unlearned with ease. On the other hand, learning Zionism in Israel is very hard to unlearn, and those schools are missing a real dedication to Halacha, which is very hard to learn... Tanach is a whole separate subject, but suffice it to say that the way chiloni schools teach Torah/Tanach (tradition, non-binding legends), will have nothing but a negative effect on your child.
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Unread 04-24-2016, 07:32 AM   #5
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Originally Posted by Tzemach View Post
That's funny, initially I drove my kids with my American license, it's a grey area which I wouldn't recommend to others. Thankfully, converting the license to Israeli wasn't such a big hassle, even though it was a good few years since I made aliya (you can do "Hamara" which means that you only need to take another test in Israel. It's good idea anyway - it's much easier and fun to live in Israel with a car.
Meaning, you drove after you'd been here for a year, but before you'd done the hamara. I always wondered what olim were supposed to do between years 1 and three . . .
Yeah, it was the hamara that didn't work. Should we have put in more effort and banged on a few tables? Probably. But it's too late now, I think.

Quote:
In cases where the schools were excellent, the Rebbe didn't need to insist on sending to Chabad. Those that asked for exemption were cases where the school was not in the best shape to put it mildly, etc. and there better alternatives locally.
I actually think the Chabad school is better quality. I haven't seen it myself, though. The safety concerns about sending a little kid that far away are what is really keeping me back. (Emuna vs. hishtadlut.)


Quote:
As you finished off, there's no guarantees either way. I don't think that this technique is so valuable that it's worth keeping kids out of a Chabad school. There are other comparable techniques that probably work almost as well.

Also, this technique is more compelling when the kid senses that their parents would do anything to send to Chabad, but it's impossible (e.g. when kids are on Shlichus, etc.). But if he knows that other kids are going to Chabad, and he isn't, and then you tell him "we're different because were Chabad", it doesn't sound convincing. "We cut corners with the Rebbe's horaos (like sending to Chabad mosdos) when they don't seem to work for us, but we expect you the kid, to follow everything strictly".

The educational message of bending over backwards with immense expense to do the Rebbe's horah of sending kids to a Chabad school, gives the kids a powerful message of that values you hold dear. It's powerful because it's a concrete experience that the kids feel each day as they are commuting to school.
Hm. Okay, I didn't think of it that way. Thanks.

Quote:
You probably mean a 5 mile radius?
No idea. I don't know distances.

Quote:
I would take chareidi any day, it's much more authentic. I think the "hate" teachings can be unlearned with ease. On the other hand, learning Zionism in Israel is very hard to unlearn, and those schools are missing a real dedication to Halacha, which is very hard to learn... Tanach is a whole separate subject, but suffice it to say that the way chiloni schools teach Torah/Tanach (tradition, non-binding legends), will have nothing but a negative effect on your child.
I actually think that hate is something that can never be undone, because it's an emotion, whereas intellectual learning can be countered.

On the other hand, I think that both chareidim and Zionists have gone off their respective drachim. The only real, authentic ones, are the masorti Sefaradim, Chabad, and Breslov. I don't know which is the better answer . . . maybe homeschool.

(Someone put this question to us at the Shabbos table a year or so ago. He said chareidi, his wife said tzioni. And we are still debating the question.)
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Unread 04-25-2016, 02:29 AM   #6
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I've driven with an American license even after 4 years, cops have no problem with it (as long as you visited the US within the last year). The problem is insurance - the laws aren't so clear, and they can give you a lot of trouble if you get sued.

I've done Hamara (I also took a few lessons to learn the Israeli laws) after 6 years since arriving in Israel. If your US license is still valid, I'm sure it's not too late.

RE hate/zionism, my view is that in Israel Zionism is not just theoretical, it's all around you. Once you adopt the view that it's something positive and holy, it's not easy to change. As far as hate to chilonim being hard to unlearn, I guess we can disagree.

To me it seems that Chareidim today are as authentic as they were in the past, the only thing that changed is a big focus on learning for life, rather than working. Maybe that's what you meant.
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Unread 04-25-2016, 02:40 AM   #7
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Never heard of that. Thanks, we will look into it.

I don't know. The joke that if Reform starts to keep Shabbat, chareidim will stop keeping Shabbat, seems to me to be true. And honestly, the Zionism we have today would make Golda Meir turn over in her grave.

I guess we can leave the chareidim and the Zionists alone; I don't know how to word what I'm trying to say.
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