Dei'ah veDibur - Information & Insight

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1 Kislev 5760 - November 10, 1999 | Mordecai Plaut, director Published Weekly








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Women Who Participate in Unsupervised Enrichment Courses Will Not be Employed By Chareidi School Systems

by Yated Ne'eman Staff

Maranan verabonon the gedolei Yisroel have issued a public statement opposing attending enrichment courses that are not supervised by rabbinical authorities by educators of the chareidi school systems, and especially the Bais Yaakov systems. They say that women who do attend such courses will not be employed in the chareidi educational systems.

Teachers and educational staff of the Bais Yaakov system have an incentive to take various enrichment courses since they lead to increased pay and professional advancement. Since the provider of the increased pay is the secular Israeli Ministry of Education, there is no requirement that the courses meet Torah standards, only that they provide training in areas that the Ministry feels are germane to education. In many cases the spirit that infuses these courses as they are offered is hostile to Torah, even though the subject matter is not in conflict with Torah. The rabbonim are working to ensure that acceptable alternatives are available for the Bais Yaakov system staff.

In their letter, maranan verabonon note, "The sacred aspirations of the gedolei Yisroel in the previous generation -- those aspirations which guided the founder of the Beis Yaakov movement -- was to instill yiras Shomayim in bnos Yisroel and to train them to observe the halochos properly. They opposed teaching them material which is unessential to avodas haBorei.

"Therefore, beginning rosh chodesh Kislev, whoever enrolls in courses that are not supervised by maranan verabonon will not be employed in chareidi educational frameworks. Not only do such courses not suit the spirit of Beis Yaakov but, in many cases, they even convey ideas that contradict the spirit of our sacred Torah. Only teachers who study in enrichment courses supervised by the rabbinical committee and who conduct themselves within our guidelines, will be able to teach in chareidi school systems."

Rabbonim and educators have long warned against participation in enrichment courses which are not held in the spirit of Torah. In many cases, teachers who participate in such courses are exposed to alien ideas. Often the nature of these courses is not in keeping with the pure spirit of the Beis Yaakov system. The letter of maranan verabonon sets strict criteria on this issue in order to preserve the pure Torah chinuch of our daughters, so that they will be able to establish Torah homes and raise their children to yiras Shomayim.

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