Dei'ah veDibur - Information & Insight

A Window into the Chareidi World

20 Ellul 5766 - September 13, 2006 | Mordecai Plaut, director Published Weekly










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Shema Yisrael Torah Network
Shema Yisrael Torah Network











Increased Enrollment at Shuvu Schools

By Betzalel Kahn

The 5767 year opened at Shuvu schools across the country with 2,000 new students enrolled at the organization's kindergartens, primary schools and high schools.

Concerted efforts were made in recent weeks to finish renovation work at various schools in the North on time. In some cases parents even joined the team of renovation workers. In Natzeret 115 new students joined the school. In Acco additional classrooms had to be arranged to accommodate 100 new students. A donation to pay for several classrooms arrived from the US just in time.

In Kfar Saba, although the Education Ministry gave notice that the Shuvu school would not open this year due to the municipality's objections to the school's presence in the city, intervention by chareidi MKs and parents allowed the school year to open on schedule. Founded two years ago with 30 students the school has grown to 186, including 40 first- graders.

The Shuvu school in Rechovot was originally started outside the city. Only recently did National Shuvu Director Rabbi Chaim Michoel Guterman manage to persuade the municipality to allocate an old building in need of repair. As soon as it was announced the school would move to the city, over 100 new students enrolled. The municipality reacted by trying to oppose the school's presence, but following concerted efforts by the rov of Rechovot, HaRav Simchah Hacohen Kook, the Mayor agreed to allow the school to open in the city- owned building. Mayor Shuki Forer accepted an invitation to visit the school on the first day of the year and stayed for an entire hour rather than the 15 minutes originally scheduled and was surprised to hear parents offer lavish praise for the high level at which the academic studies and the Torah-based material are taught.

The Shuvu school in Lod opened three years ago with 54 students and this year boosts an enrollment of over 600, kein yirbu. The Shuvu school in Ashkelon is also proving a great success. Technical problems threatened to keep the school from opening this year but parents did not give up, refusing to enroll their children at the city's secular schools. At the last moment a suitable building was found for 700 students.

The Shuvu school in Netanya faces ongoing opposition by the municipality. On the first day of school Shinui members from the municipality held a demonstration outside the school. Hundreds of students had to be smuggled in through the emergency gate on a side street.

"These are just a few of the tremendous challenges we had on the way to the first day of the school year," says Rabbi Guterman. "Schools in Ashdod, Be'er Sheva, Tel Aviv and many other places reported high growth in the number of students." He extended warm thanks to MK Rabbi Moshe Gafni and the other chareidi MKs for their help in removing the various obstacles along the way.


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