Dei'ah veDibur - Information & Insight

A Window into the Chareidi World

6 Ellul 5760 - September 6, 2000 | Mordecai Plaut, director Published Weekly








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Home and Family
53,000 Students in Bnei Brak Schools -- Biggest System in Dan Region
by A. Cohen

53,000 Bnei Brak students kein yirbu returned to school this Elul, in a variety of schools, kindergartens and educational frameworks, in comparison with the 51,000 students of last year. This is the largest body of students in one city in the entire Dan region, the most populous of the country.

The secretary and spokesman of the municipality, Avrohom Tannenbaum, related that 15,000 students enrolled in the elementary school system of the city this school year. 28 of these schools belong to Chinuch Atzmai, five to the Mamlachti Dati (government religious), and two to the Mamlachti (government). In addition, there are 40 non- municipal talmudei Torah in the city, which have a total of 10,000 students.

An extensive project in conjunction with the Education Ministry has been launched in the city's elementary schools. This project includes changes and refurbishing old buildings. In many schools broad renovations which include additional construction are taking place. These renovations will enable the absorption of more students and improving their learning environment and the appearance of the schools. The following schools are included in these projects: Razi-Li for boys, the Bais Yaakov school in Neveh Achiezer, the Segulah school and the Mohelever school. Soon additional schools will be added to this project. An additional story has just been completed in the Vishnitz Beis Yaakov school, and it will no longer have to use caravans, the trailer-like temporary prefabricated structures that are so common in chareidi education.

Unlike past years when there was a decrease in the number of students in nursery schools kindergartens, this year enrollment increased by 300 students from all sectors. As a result, three new kindergartens have been opened this year so far, and one or two more might also be opened. There are a total of 173 municipal nursery schools in the city, with an enrollment of 5,200 students. 146 among them are chareidi, 25 Mamlachti Dati, and 2 Mamlachti. There are also 15 public and privately owned nurseries and kindergartens, with an enrollment of 5,900 students.

At the meeting of the executive board of the Education Department the city's mayor, Rabbi Mordechai Karelitz, its deputy mayors, Amram Ivgi and Yaakov Solar, as well as the director of the department, Yehonasan Safra, noted that this was the first time that students had been placed in the kindergartens using a computerized system according to the neighborhood in which they reside, and without any human intervention. This is the fairest method even though not all of the parents are satisfied with the division. This system will continue, and every effort will be made to improve it.

About 8,000 students are studying in the city's high schools. They are divided into 19 chareidi schools, four Mamlachti Dati (junior high schools and high schools) and one Mamlachti school. There are also about 50 yeshivos ketanos in the city, in which some 9,000 students study.

The Education Ministry has granted the Rav Wolf Seminary and the Gerrer Seminary permits to build scores of main classrooms ("home rooms"), as well as additional classes and offices on the Berman area. Rebbetzin Elkayam's seminary is being transferred to the former building of the Segulah school on Aharonowitz Street.

The administration of the department has organized a special task force to solve all of the general problems liable to arise this forthcoming school year. The task force is manned by the director of the department, Rabbi Yehonasan Safra, his deputy, Rabbi Arye Zand; deputy director, Refoel Duvlin;, the director of the Education Services Department, Rabbi Yehuda Gelber; the director of the Kindergarten Department, Mr. Gavriel Cohen; and the department's engineer, Shmuel Cohen-Tzedek.

There are 18 special education kindergartens in the city, and 25 small and special classes located in three schools in the city. There are also three special education classes in the Wolf High School, as well as those run by the Ohel Sarah network. This year, Ohel Sara has been allocated three additional mobile buildings, which it will occupy until it transfers to its renovated structure.

This past year, it was decided to launch an integrated kindergarten for special and regular children, on a trial basis. This kindergarten was very successful, and both the parents of the children and the education department were pleased with the results. Due to of its success, an additional kindergarten of that sort was opened this year. New educational methods are often tested despite the high costs they involve.

This year, kindergartens for children with DDP will be opened, in conjunction coordination with the American expert, Mr. Weinstein, who ran such a successful kindergarten in the past. The Education Department of Bnei Brak is also considering opening a school along the same lines.


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