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September 19, 2014 / 24 Elul, 5774
At a Glance

Posts Tagged ‘School’

British PM : Check Schools After Islamist Takeover Plot

Monday, June 9th, 2014

Britain is beginning to wake up after an Islamist plot to take over the nation’s school system was discovered.

The alleged plot, ‘Operation Trojan Horse,’ involved forcing state schools to adopt a more Muslim culture by hiring school governors whose sympathies lay with Islam and would support a more conservative Islamic religious agenda.

Prime Minister David Cameron issued a pre-emptive statement Monday prior to publication of the findings of an investigation by Ofsted school officials into the allegations about the plot.

Cameron also scolded two of his most senior ministers over the weekend for publicly criticizing each other over their handling of the issue.

Hadasim School in Sharon Region Evacuated

Monday, June 2nd, 2014

The Hadasim school in the Sharon region was evacuated late this morning after a suspicious item was spotted in the building.

Security and police forces were alerted and arrived immediately to check whether or not the object is a bomb.

Staff and students were quickly and quietly removed from the building and currently are waiting for further instructions. No further details were made available.

Haifa Selected ‘Smartest’ City in The Middle East

Wednesday, May 21st, 2014

Haifa was crowned the ‘smartest’ city in the Middle East by the IESE Business School at the University of Navarra in Barcelona. A research team examined 135 cities from 55 countries as part of the IESE Cities in Motion Index (ICIM), an annual survey that ranks the cities based on categories of innovation, sustainability and quality of life. The following ten different dimensions were used to establish the ranking: governance, public management, urban planning, technology, environment, international outreach, social cohesion, mobility and transportation, human capital, and economy. The smartest city in the world for 2014 is Tokyo, which received a perfect score and was described as “impressive in its civic management, technology, economy and its ability to attract talented people from around the world.” London came in second, followed by Zurich and Paris. Of the top 20 cities, 10 are European, six American, three Asian and one is Oceanian.

Haifa is leading in the Middle East, followed by Tel Aviv. Haifa was ranked 24th worldwide.

Haifa Mayor Yona Yahav expressed satisfaction by the results, stating: “Haifa has some of the best schools in the state, which have existed for over a century, including the Technion and Haifa University. Haifa is a small city with the largest number of Nobel Prizes in science and the country’s largest high-tech and life science park in Israel. I’m glad we got another seal of approval and we will continue forward with full force.”

Air Raid Drill Sirens Sound Nationwide

Monday, February 24th, 2014

As part of a nationwide drill, air raid sirens sounded at 10:05 AM all across Israel.

The purpose of the drill is to test and prepare the schools, teachers and students in case of a missile attack, such as from Iran, Gaza or the Palestinian Authority.

During the drill, students from nursery schools on up, went into bomb shelters.

At least some schools are testing out an Internet based “remote-learning” system, playing out scenarios where students or teachers are unable to physically make it to the school. As part of that test, classes are taught (or learned) remotely with one, some or all of the participants sitting at home. That part of the drill will take place at 3 PM this afternoon.

Parents were asked to talk to their children before going to school today, to prepare them so they wouldn’t be scared when the sirens went off.

Teacher and Policeman Killed in Moscow School Shooting Spree

Monday, February 3rd, 2014

A student killed one policeman, a biology teacher, shot and wounded another policeman and took 20 pupils hostage before police overcame and arrested him Sunday in the northern end of Moscow.

“The person who took 20 people and a teacher hostage is a student in the upper classes at the same school,” an interior ministry spokesman said on Russia’s official television channel. “He has been neutralized and all the students have been freed.”

All of the children and teachers in the school have been evacuated from the school.

 

Aliyah and the Gifted Child

Tuesday, December 10th, 2013

As an education writer for the nonprofit organization, Kars4Kids, and as someone who made Aliyah from Pittsburgh 34 years ago, I decided to write about the challenges of Aliyah from western countries with school age children. See the previous piece in this series, Aliyah and the Special Needs Educator. Today I interview Rachel Moore of Neve Daniel.

Varda: Tell me about yourself, Rachel.

Rachel Moore

Rachel Moore

Rachel: I am 41 years old, expecting my 8th child. I have been working in PR and communications for the past 17 years in government and the non-profit world. I blog, sing, and study Torah whenever I can grab an opportunity.

Varda: When did you make Aliyah? How many children did you bring with you and what were their ages?

Rachel: I made Aliyah in 1995 at 22. However, I left again in 2000 and spent 12 years back in the U.S. for personal reasons, and only moved back in July of 2012.

My second time settling here was truly Aliyah for my children, who at the time were 12, 11, 11, 9, 7 and 4.

My eldest is my stepson, 19, who is a sophomore at Rutgers University in the U.S. He did not move here with us. My other 6 children are now 13, 12 year-old twins, 10, 8 and 5, and I am due with another one – today, actually[Rachel had her baby that evening, a little boy! V.E.].

Varda: Tell me about your children. What are their difficulties?

Rachel: We have at least two children who have been classified as “gifted” outside of Israel, and meeting their needs is a challenge, and also requires learning the system. In addition, I have one daughter who I suspect as having ADHD, but she hasn’t been classified – yet.

Varda: Where do they go to school?

The newest addition to the Moore family.

The newest addition to the Moore family.

Rachel: My 13 year-old daughter attends Orot Etzion girls’ school. My 12 year-old twin boys attend Horev High School (7th grade), my 10 year-old son attends Carmei Yehuda, Mamad Hativa Bogeret boys’ school in Alon Shvut, my 8 year-old daughter attends Shirat Chanan, Mamad Hativa Tzeira in Alon Shvut, and my 5 year-old attends the Mechina of Orot Etzion in Neve Daniel.

Varda: Do your children receive additional help outside of school?

Rachel: My daughter with [suspected] ADHD sees a therapist (in English) outside of school that specializes in children with this disability. My 10 year-old son is now enrolled in a gifted pull-out program in Efrat once a week called Afikim [Eligibility is determined by both written and oral tests and only 1.5% of students are accepted], and is in mitzuyanut [gifted class]within school. We had to get him special permission to take the test to qualify for Afikim at the beginning of 5th grade, because the test is usually given in 2nd grade.

We believe that our 2nd grader would have qualified [as gifted] the year we moved here, but we didn’t know she had the option to take the test in English or with translation help. No one had explained this to us, so she took it with the rest of the class. We may still pursue an appeal so that she can retake the test, but it will probably be an uphill battle.

Varda: What out-of-pocket expenses do you have in educating your children and what is covered by the state?

Does It Bother You when your Kid Comes Home Feeling like Junk?

Wednesday, November 20th, 2013

The talk of the town is how direct Rabbi Zecharia Wallerstein was when talking at the Agudah convention about the effect our educational system is having on our children. For a long time now, I’ve been having an issue with trying to recognize where the Torah/Truth is in the way we live as frum Yidden.

If an outsider first learned the Torah and then did a study on how observant Jews live their lives, he/she would have many questions. There are numerous things that we do that not only don’t fit with Torah values but they are anti Torah values. We have systems set in place that make most of us live beyond our means. We are fiercely protecting an educational system that goes against everything we actually believe in. We put a huge amount of unneeded pressure on ourselves that literally dictates how we live our lives.

What is sad is that we all know it, we all think about it and it bothers us all. What is sadder is that it is a BIG deal when a Rabbi gets up and actually expresses what we are all thinking. What a strange thing, a phenomenon, that there exists a society that puts so much value on being truthful and emesdik, but at the same time has this vested interest in not only not expressing or talking about an entire educational system that is flawed at its roots, but even protecting it and making our own children suffer through it. It becomes this huge deal when Rabbi Wallerstein actually says something about it. We have to question our sanity and values around this.

What are we protecting? What are we so scared of? Who are we nervous about not impressing?

Let me ask you a question. You don’t need to raise your hand, but raise your hand if you really deep down knew what Rabbi Wallerstein was talking about. Raise your hand if these issues have been bothering you all along. Raise your hand if you are worried about your own children’s love for Torah and Yiddishkeit. Raise your hand if you think that our educational system is not giving you any fuzzy comfortable feeling that they will help your children stay on the derech. Raise your hand if you feel like you make your children do things that are absolutely ridiculous in the name of being part of our educational system. Raise your hand if this is not the system you would come up with if you were asked to develop a system from scratch. Raise your hand if you feel bad sending your children off to school. Raise your hand if you hate seeing how much homework your kids come home with and how many tests they have.

How would you do if you had a job that went from early in the morning to late in the afternoon or night and then came home only to continue working for a few more hours, knowing all along that you really won’t be paid anything extra for the work you’re doing? How long can you keep that up for? How long would we be able to keep up a real love for Yiddishkeit and learning when all it means is memorizing material long enough to regurgitate it on a piece of paper in the form of a test? We know every one of our children is different. How much does it bother you that they are all judged only by the grades they get no matter how hard or how little they try (depending on their IQ or memory).

How much does it bother you when your kid comes home feeling like junk and overwhelmed every day? Does it hurt to see your kid growing up with practically no time to actually be a kid? How natural is it for our kids to be sitting at desks for hours and hours on end learning? How well would you do with that? How many of the school rules do you really agree with in terms of tznius way beyond the letter of the law? From the way the parents dress, we know the answer to that. And I’m not talking about parents dressing un-tzniusdik. I’m talking about the parents who are dressed tzniusdik – but of course the day they left school they changed the way they dress to what was tznius and comfortable and something they actually felt good in and made sense to them.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/indepth/opinions/does-it-bother-you-when-your-kid-comes-home-feeling-like-junk/2013/11/20/

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