Chinuch Atzmai Begins Another School Year
by Elchanan Hammer
"This Wednesday, Chinuch Atzmai opened its gates to masses of students after two months of intensive groundwork," the Director General of Chinuch Atzmai, Rabbi Eliezer Sorotzkin, stated to Yated Ne'eman. "Teams of administrative and educational personnel have been prepping to launch this school year, which has been preceded as well by a large task force of those involved in setting up suitable buildings acquired and accoutered for first-time usage, some of which were provided by local council authorities and, sadly enough, others which are still stopgap accommodations.
"This year, for the first time, the number of students in our network passed 100,000 for the first time by several thousand. This is a very significant number and it is unprecedented. If in the past gedolei Yisroel called Chinuch Atzmai the largest yeshiva in the world, when it was only 50 or 60,000 students, our scale now is certainly greater. More than 100,000 students, in dozens of cities and settlements throughout Eretz Yisroel.
"Of all these, almost 6,000 are new to the Chinuch Atzmai network. This is a significant increment, made up of schools which joined Chinuch Atzmai, new schools we opened up and natural increase. All over our network you can see schools in which the eighth grade graduates 2 or 3 parallel classes, but the incoming first grade has six or seven, bli ayin hora."
Rabbi Sorotzkin emphasizes the tremendous efforts which were invested in providing a spectrum of quality solutions for the ultimate benefit both of the students and the goal of Chinuch Atzmai: education in its purest religious form, preservation of its independence and integrity and strict observance of standards without any changes or external dictates as per the direction and directives of gedolei Yisroel.
"We envision before our eyes a firm stand of providing a new receptacle for our vintage wine, adapted to every child seeking a Torah education. Also at the onset of 5778, Chinuch Atzmai stands firm, as always, to offset any veering from its principles, and prepared to provide pure Torah education for all those who are ready to accept the rules and standards of the respective schools, with no discrimination with regard to social or communal status. This has always been our mission from our inception. And when we saw on Wednesday morning all the throngs of children, products of outreach, who have been registered through great endeavor by Lev L'Achim activists, coming to study with the aid of the Transportation Fund, we will know that this year, too, all hands will have been successfully clasped for the sake of the tens of thousands of young Jewish children in Israel wherever they may be so that they, too, can benefit from the rich and pure heritage of our people."