Dei'ah veDibur - Information & Insight

A Window into the Chareidi World

17 Shevat 5766 - February 15, 2006 | Mordecai Plaut, director Published Weekly










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Jerusalem Opens Special Kindergarten Enrollment Center

by Betzalel Kahn

The Jerusalem Municipality's Department of Chareidi Education will operate a special enrollment center in addition to the one at Safra Square, to allow parents of kindergartners to enroll their children for the upcoming 5767 school year. Designed to save parents time, the enrollment center will be open this week from Sunday to Wednesday, 6:00 p.m. to 10:00 p.m. at Beit Malka, Rechov Brandeis 2. The supplemental enrollment center will be run by a staff of municipal workers using a new, onsite computerized system. The system will bring together various data to make the process easier for parents.

The enrollment reforms being introduced by the Department of Chareidi Education are part of the Pashut Lateit Sherut ("Simply to Serve") campaign launched by Jerusalem Mayor Rabbi Uri Lupoliansky. "The new enrollment arrangements will save parents valuable time, preventing bitul Torah and loss of work hours," noted the Mayor. "The Jerusalem Municipality is striving to streamline the service it provides residents, which will be manifested, im yirtzeh Hashem, in many other projects of a similar nature which the municipality will run during the course of the coming year."

In addition to the enrollment center at Beit Malka this year, the Department of Chareidi Education will also make it possible for the parents of children scheduled to study in kindergarten (gan chova) in 5767 to enroll them at the kindergarten itself. Deputy Mayor and Chareidi Education Commissioner Rabbi Uri Maklev said that as part of the pre- enrollment program kindergarten teachers at chareidi kindergartens around the city received enrollment forms they passed on to parents, who sent them to the municipality. The pre-enrollment program is an innovative initiative to allow parents to enroll their children without having to come to municipality offices.

Municipality officials estimate that 15,000 children will enroll for kindergarten. Enrollment is mandatory for children born between 1 Teves 5761 (Dec. 27, 2000) and 30 Kislev 5762 (Dec. 15, 2001). Enrollment for nursery school (kedem chova) is for children born between 1 Teves 5762 (Dec. 16, 2001) and 30 Kislev 5764 (Dec. 25, 2003).

Meanwhile enrollment for Bais Yaakov kindergartens around the country is already underway and is scheduled to continue until Sunday, 5 Adar.

Parents of nursery school children requesting tuition discounts must include documentation for their income for October, November and December of 2005. Before enrolling, parents in every city must verify which documents they are required to submit when requesting a tuition discount and it is recommended they inquire whether their local authority is eligible for a collective discount, which is available in Bnei Brak, Beit Shemesh, Modi'in Illit, Beitar Illit, Telzstone and other places.

The Education Ministry says this year parents who do not submit the necessary documentation at the time of enrollment will not be able to submit them later and will be ineligible for a discount.

Rabbi Yitzchok Goldknopf, director of Bais Yaakov kindergartens and day-care centers, said due to the high demand, additional English-speaking and boys-only kindergartens as well as integrated kindergartens for speech delays and special-ed kindergartens will be opened in 5767 be'ezer Hashem.

He says in 5766 Petachiya operated learning programs for children with slight and moderate retardation — special kindergartens, integrated kindergartens and learning therapy day-care centers. Petachiya operates classes in Jerusalem, Bnei Brak, Modi'in Illit, Beitar Illit, Beit Shemesh and Nof Ayalon.

Preparations are now being made to enroll babies at Petachiya learning therapy day-care centers, which are recognized by the Health and Welfare Ministries. After enrollment is complete Petachiya, in cooperation with vested authorities, will arrange placements for children.

The administration says it hopes several new classrooms in proper facilities will be opened before the 5767 school year commences, replacing rented apartments and bomb shelters currently in use. The Bais Yaakov administration, in cooperation with the proper authorities, is also working on a campaign to improve the appearance of kindergartens in Jerusalem and to install new playground equipment.

Enrollment for Bais Yaakov day-care centers will begin immediately after Pesach.


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