Across Israel, Meir Panim responds to the growing needs of the country’s 1.75 million impoverished residents through various food and social service programs.
Parents of students from the Raqia preschool in the Nofei Yam neighborhood in north Tel Aviv have expressed outrage that their children’s school will also serve as a synagogue on Shabbat and holidays.
According to a report by Haaretz, the Tel Aviv city council gave the Ohel Yosef Yitzhak community center association the right to use the children’s school for five years, or until the establishment of a permanent synagogue. Land for the synagogue has already been allocated.
Parents, who say they discovered the arrangement by chance, demanded the right to voice objections and said the municipality decision should be suspended pending the response of the parents.
Specifically, the parents complained that adults should not be allowed to use a building dedicated to children and that religious activities should not be held at an educational institution. They say one of the school’s rooms has become a storage facility for prayer items, and that the electronic toilets which are disconnected prior to Shabbat are not being reconnected for use by kids during the week.
A few weeks ago, Tel Aviv residents forced the closure of a temporary synagogue in the Merom preschool next to the YOO Towers in north Tel Aviv.
About the Author: Malkah Fleisher is a graduate of Cardozo Law School in New York City. She is an editor/staff writer at JewishPress.com and co-hosts a weekly Israeli FM radio show. Malkah lives with her husband and two children on the Mount of Olives in Jerusalem.
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