web analytics
October 24, 2014 / 30 Tishri, 5775
At a Glance
Judaism
Sponsored Post
Meir Panim with Soldiers 5774 Roundup: Year of Relief and Service for Israel’s Needy

Meir Panim implements programs that serve Israel’s neediest populations with respect and dignity. Meir Panim also coordinated care packages for families in the South during the Gaza War.



The Peace-Loving Principal

Lessons-logo

Meir was an amazing school principal. The school he ran outside Jerusalem was popular and successful. Occasionally it took him weeks, even months, to convince parents to send their unwilling children to his school. But his popularity and success spread by word of mouth and parents were relieved to share their tremendous burden with someone who so obviously cared for all of his pupils.

He had an instant rapport with young boys and teenagers – even those whose connection with Yiddishkeit at this moment in their lives was very tenuous.

Meir could always sense their pain and troubles and would go to any length to get them to open up to him, whether it meant playing football with them for hours or going for a horse or even camel ride. His work was a 24-hour job; he was available to parents and children at all hours of the day.

His students were challenging, each with his own story and background that had brought him to the school. Some examples: parents with a serious drinking problem; a mother who injected herself with drugs in front of her children; children torn between divorced parents, wretched pawns in a lose-lose fight; children from homes where one parent was Torah-observant and the other not, with the ensuing fights and discord this often brought; and children in homes where neither parent worked and money was so scarce that the children were always hungry. Due to the family problems many of the children were verbally and mentally abused, and although there may be no physical bruises on their bodies, their souls were scarred.

The school provided not just an education but far more. There was love, understanding, warmth, food, fun, prizes, encouragement, and above all a home and a listening ear that was non-judgmental. Meir was not just the principal, but also the children’s counselor and advocate.

But one thing Meir couldn’t abide was machloket. He would fight wholeheartedly on behalf of his pupils in a situation involving a dispute – but not so if it was political, educational, or religious in nature. He would go out of his way to avoid being involved, in any way, in those types of disputes. Meir knew they brought only trouble and Chillul Hashem.

He even refused to send his own sons to a highly respected yeshiva because it was mired in machloket. He didn’t believe anyone could learn properly in such an atmosphere.

One day Meir was told that the local municipality of the small town where the school was located could no longer afford to fund two religious schools in the area. He would have to “fight it out” with the other school’s principal to determine which school would receive funding. Meir didn’t take long to reach a decision. It didn’t really matter that his school was the smaller and newer one; Meir was set on never getting involved in any political fight – even for his school’s existence.

It was a sad day for Meir, his pupils and their families when he announced that he was closing the school. Despite pleas from parents and students to change his mind, he was adamant. He would not get involved in any fight for the right to receive funding. He recommended to all the parents that they send their children to the other religious school, which would now stay open.

He kept in touch with many of his pupils, especially those who didn’t transfer to the other school. He displayed loyalty to them, showing a great concern for their welfare.

The following year was difficult for Meir and his family. He didn’t find a principal’s job in another school, and although many asked him to teach them how he had been so successful, these calls and meetings – during which he always freely shared his experiences – didn’t provide an income.

About the Author:


If you don't see your comment after publishing it, refresh the page.

Our comments section is intended for meaningful responses and debates in a civilized manner. We ask that you respect the fact that we are a religious Jewish website and avoid inappropriate language at all cost.

If you promote any foreign religions, gods or messiahs, lies about Israel, anti-Semitism, or advocate violence (except against terrorists), your permission to comment may be revoked.

No Responses to “The Peace-Loving Principal”

Comments are closed.

SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Current Top Story
Do you know where your vegetables grow?
Not So Kosher Shemittah L’Mehadrin
Latest Judaism Stories
Greenbaum-102414

Noach was the lonely man of faith living in a depraved world, full of wickedness.

Parsha-Perspectives-logo

Avraham became a great man during the 175 years of his life, while his predecessors became increasingly wicked, despite staggering knowledge, during their lifetimes of hundreds of years.

Rapps-Rabbi-Joshua-logo

Shem realized that he owed his existence to his father who brought him into the world.

Daf-Yomi-logo

Law-Abiding Citizen
‘That Which Is Crooked Cannot Be Made Straight…’
(Yevamos 22a-b)

The flood was not sent to destroy, but to restore the positive potential of the world.

Question: I recently loaned money to a friend who has been able to repay only part of it. This was an interest-free loan. We exchanged a signed IOU, not a proper shtar with witnesses, since I have always trusted her integrity and only wanted a document that confirms what was loaned and what was repaid. Now that shemittah is approaching, what should I do? Should I forgive the loan? And if my friend is not able to repay it, may I deduct the unpaid money from my ma’aser requirement?

Name Withheld

Why is there is no mention of dinosaurs, and other prehistoric animals, in the Torah?

Strict din demands perfection. There is no room for shortcomings and no place for excuses; you are responsible.

Surprisingly, my husband and one son arrived home over half-an-hour earlier than usual. I excitedly shared my perfect-timing story, but my better half one upped me easily.

Noach felt a tug, and then heard a rip. His jacket had been caught on the nail, and the beautiful suit had a tear.

Boundaries must be set in every home. Parents and children are not pals. They are not equals.

Noah and his wife could not fathom living together as husband and wife and continuing the human race

The Babel story is the 2nd in a 4-act drama that’s unmistakably a connecting thread of Bereishit

Our intentions are critical in raising children because they mimic everything we parents do & think

A humble person who achieves a position of prominence will utilize the standing to benefit others.

More Articles from Ann Goldberg
Goldberg-091214

There will always be items that don’t freeze well – salads and some rice- or potato-based dishes – so you need to leave time to prepare or cook them closer to Yom Tov and ensure there is enough room in the refrigerator to store them.

Lessons-Emunah-logo

It’s written, it says, with all the segulos for shalom bayis and you gave it as a gift to a chassan and kallah.

One thing Meir couldn’t abide was machloket. He would fight wholeheartedly on behalf of his pupils in a situation involving a dispute – but not so if it was political, educational, or religious in nature.

If your home fits the chaotic description but you’d love to change it to the calm one maybe you should think about joining the ever growing Chatzos Movement – a group of ladies whose goal is to have all the main preparations for Shabbos over by chatzos, the middle of the day on Friday.

Meital and Aharon, married for several years, were thrilled to discover that Meital was pregnant. But within a few hours of their son’s birth, it was painfully apparent that things were far from all right medically.

I knew it wasn’t the right attitude to have but Tisha B’Av 30 years ago was one of the happiest days of my life.

The GPS had not been invented when Shelly set off on a Friday afternoon many years ago to join the Bnei Akiva camp in the English countryside. The organizers always managed to find a farmer who welcomed young campers under adult supervision; thus they set up their tents and during the week took the opportunity to learn the halachot of building an eruv. There would be no problems on Shabbat and they would be able to carry within the campsite.

A pale young man shuffled into the small Jerusalem yeshiva during kriyat haTorah one Shabbat morning.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/judaism/jewish-columns/lessons-in-emunah/the-peace-loving-principal/2013/12/18/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: