Readers’ Scoop: Where Is The Rav Now?

(Below is an unedited letter submitted to us by a reader. TLS welcomes your letters at [email protected] . The views are solely those of the writer and does not necessarily reflect the views of TLS)
Dear Editor,
I met a friend today who shared an incident with me that happened to her this past week that I wanted to share with the public. Her four year old son was enrolled by a Morah for the upcoming school year, beginning September 2009. This Morah called my friend this past week to inform her that her son was no longer welcome to attend her playgroup. The following day the Morah’s teenage daughter delivered an envelope containing her original deposit and a curt note wishing her luck finding another school for her son. When asked for an explanation the answer was that two mothers had called to say that this child was aggressive and that they couldn’t allow their child to remain with this group if he was a part of it. (Read more)
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  1. What blame is there on the Rabbanim? They were not the least bit involved. Your friend should go speak to a Rov TOGETHER with the Morah so that the proper way to deal with this this situation can be clarified.

  2. Everything is min hashamayim and altough it may be tough to get into a new playgroup now, at least you got your reg. $ back and there is still 3 weeks left to find someone. There are plenty of playgroups out there that aren't full. Just look in the BP weekly.

    At least you got an explanation. Maybe you should use this time together with your child to see why he is aggressive. Maybe it's better off he's not with those children. Gom zu l'tovah!

  3. Welcome to Lakewood!! now it starts in playgroup NOT High School!! NOT Primary!! I heard from a friend of mine whose child was not accepted into primary and was told by the owner of the school (whom some people in town are machshiv for some odd reason) " I have Palers and Olshins banging down my door I don't have room for you" !!!!

  4. Nowhere in her letter does the mother deny that her 'yingelah' is NOT aggressive. It seems that she knows that he is aggressive. Instead of "k'veching", address the issue. It will solve many other issues in the future.

  5. Theres nothing wrong if he doesn't find a place, its not school. maybe the child is aggressive because he never had a mother, maybe his mother worked all day since he was born and never spent time with the child, why should the morah suffer, is the mother willing to pay double tuition? i think the best thing is the kid should stay home with his mother this year and he should get love and attention and then when the kid is school age he will have a good self esteem and wont be aggressive. a morah like any other profession can pick who she want to do business with

  6. To all those people defending the honor of the "Rav," I agree with you. A Rav should be on a pedestal and should be treated and referred to with tremendous respect. From reading this letter, I don't believe that the author intended to disrespect an individual Rav, or even the general title of "Rav." Rather, I think that the point she was making was the fact that the Torah viewpoint is always called upon to defend and protect the parnassoh and reputation and sensitivities of the institutions and groups, such as in this case, "the playgroup Morahs." These Morahs would not hesitate to use the "daas Torah card" to protect themselves. But where is the rush to turn to "daas Torah" when it is someone else's hurt, aggravation, and sensitivites. Where is the "I don't know how to resolve this difficulty with the individual parents involved, so let's ask daas Torah." Why is the Rav called upon only when it's your parnossah at stake and not someone else's diamond, their precious son. I think that the letter writer was putting the onus on the Morah who didn't bother to ask the Rav how to deal with this, rather than actually blaming the Rav, as some commenters interpreted.

  7. If all you "quick to comment without reading through the letter people" would stop for a minute, they would realize that this letter was not written by the mother of the child. it was written by a friend of the mother who was pained on her friend's behalf. It is not the friend's place to comment on whether or not the child is aggressive. She is just bringing up an issue. You don't know if the child is agggressive or not, just as the Morah doesn't know. There still should be a protocol for dealing with a situation like this. If the mother would pull her child out at this late date, it would be the mother's responsibility to fill the place appropriately, or swallow the loss and pay for the year. In this situation, the Morah should have certain responsibilities to the child she already accepted. Whether the Morah works actively to find him an appropriate spot, or whether she works within her own playgroup setting to accommodate this child (who happens to be a normal leibidike boy, not aggressive)she has to take some responsibility.

  8. Please let's not ame "The Rov" but yes this does happen when s/o thinks they raise angels kids are kids deal with what does this parent expect when they get toschool

  9. I was a kindergarten teacher years ago and I had a very aggressive child in the class, who made life miserable for everyone. He definitely needed some help in learning how to control himself. It wasn't up to me to "expel" him, but, if it were, I probably would have, for the sake of the rest of the class.

  10. Who says it's illegal? Most ordinary yeshivish activities are legal and legitimate. If I want to park a car on my lawn, it is legal. If I offer to teach your 4 year old, it's also legal. It's legal for me to cash your check. It's legal for me to sell you prepared food…

    There are a lot of bsuiness activities that ordinary people do that are perfectly legal, whether or not they are "registered" or whatever.

    For some reason, people just assume that age-old yeshivish economics are somehow illegal.

  11. Anonymous @ 1:11

    Is it legal?

    1] Is the place zoned for it?

    2] Is there an adequate teacher/student ratio?

    3] Are taxes paid for the "legal" business?

  12. i think that parents often think that their children are perfect and it is their job to protect them from the influences of other children who may be tough or challenging or may even be normal, but not as normal as MY child. Imagine the following conversation…
    "What should happen to the other kid? I don't know and frankly, i don't care as long as MY precious child is protected and guarded." And what would be if it were my child that was tougher or more challenging…"Ah, now you're asking a good question. I mean, you don't expect me to keep him home. That wouldn't be fair. The Morah and group should be prepared to work together with us to make the situation a good one. I mean, everone knows that kids aren't perfect." And that, ladies and gentlemen of the jury, is the crux of the problem. If we would view all the children in this town as OUR CHILDREN and not as SOMEONE ELSE'S PROBLEM, I think the verdict would be a little different. It's not to late to change our perspective.

  13. I think anon 1138 comment was very good. the writer of this article did not properly express the issue . the blame is not on the rabonim, but on the who when it comes to their loss will claim that your going against daas torah, but they have a right to make decisions without asking daas torah. i understand the hardships of dealing with an agressive child , but there are many hardships in all things in life and how can a young morah have the right to make a unilatiral decision to throw out this child without both sides going to real daas torah.

    i also think that the writer is taking a very narrow view of the problem in general. All of a sudden your friend has a problem and your starting to kvetch. the problem here is a problem that luns through the whole chinuch system in lakewood. the problem is that its not about the children anymore , its all about money and ( for some also kovod). while this is cannot be said about everyone the problem is so big and so rampant that it affects everyone.our mosdos are run for the most part by a bunch of bal habattim who is not for the fact that they have mosdos would be looked upon as the scum of our town due to their agressive natures and lack of middos. many are far from daas torah and are only in it for the money and kovod. i have first hand knowledge of so many stories where they claim to be following dass torah and name a certian individial as their daas torah , but as soon as that person has a different opinion then thier own , that rov isnt dass torah anymore " vaal eir farshtait nisht der inian " oh all of a sudden when its not good for your pocket or your kovod, now he doesnt understand. i am not talking about an isolated incident , i am taliking from ages 3-20 , boys and girls.
    the fact that we have let our chinuch be hijacked by a bunch of people who lack middos and yiras shomaim is really our own faults and there is not much to do about it . but to quote a previous commentor. as long as the "palers and olshins " are banging down these guys doors to try to get their children into their playgroups/ schools / yeshivos – the will keep on being allowed to behave like a bunch of animals. the only thing that can solve this problem is if the rabonnim and choshive people in this town stop sending to mosdos where to ballai mosdos who have no middos, are in it for the money ,and treat people like objects. that many be the only complaint against a ROV. that the rabbonim should boycott such insitutions on principal. ( but i dont see that happening ) so until that time maybe it would be better to move out of lakewood to place where people are treated like humans and advise your friend that should not even bother to think about sending her child to brisk or any yeshiva that makes unilateral decisions with their own interest in mind without consulting any daas torah .

  14. As someone who does not live in Lakewood but has family there, in my humble opinion the Morah is 100% wrong. She heard from two mothers who I am sure are very 'CHOSHUV' that this child is aggressive. Maybe these two mothers have a dislike to this child or his family maybe the family does not rate that their children should be with this child. The parents of this young boy are within their rights to take this morah to a din torah. When she accepted this child in her playgroup I am sure she made her inquiries now she is breaking the contract. She is at fault. I have a suggestion. If these two motheres are not happy with this child being with their wonderful children they should pull their kids out after paying for a full year. If I was the parent involved I would not take this lying down I say to the parents to fight for your rights yo have been wronged by some do gooders who are vey selfish.

  15. As an adult who was a bullied child, I can express my admiration for the Morah's actions.Usually the class bully barely gets punished (in this world) for his crimes but his victims can suffer their whole lives.Thank you Morah, for not allowing that to be the case with you.Thank you.

  16. Very disturbed to see that only 2:18 has taken a Torahdik approach to this situation. This is a standard case of a Melamed wanting to back out of a commitment to a student which is covered in Choshen Mishpat. While one cannot pasken while hearing only side of the story. Just for the sake of discussion
    1> There is no taaneh of MEKACH TOAS since the mother did not hide or misrepresent anything. Aggressiveness is a MUM GOLU and it is the responsibility of the Morah to investigate and determine this before taking a deposit.

    2> A contract (even if done orally) was made and a deposit taken under no circumstances is one allowed to abrogate their contractual obligations.

    3> The Morah sould not be having a financial loss, since these 2 parents must pay for the year. The possibility that they will not pay and the morah will have to go to a din torah to collect the money is not sufficent reason to releave her of her contractual obligations.

    4> Even if for some reason these 2 parents are allowed to back out without renumeration. The Morah would have to suffer the loss unless she can find a substitute playgroup.

    These are basic Halochos which should be kept by any Ben Torah.
    Not doing so is GEZEL GOMOR.

    By not going to a DIN TORAH the mother is only encouraging the prevelant environment in Lakewood where ISH ES RAYAHU BOLAYU

  17. The Basic Laws of Lashon HoRa say that:
    1. Lashon HoRa is when something true is said.
    2. If a lie or exageration is said, it is MoTzee Shem Ra.
    3. Lashon HoRa kills 3, the talker, the Listener, and the one spoken about !!!

    About MoTzee Shem Ra it says
    "Ain Lo Mechila Olamis"

    Why is Mashiach not here yet?

  18. as far as the guy who is upset that the mosdos in town are in it for the money and the kovod:
    I doubt its the money – what school is turning a profit? there has to be an easier way to make a living than running a school in lkwd.

    It is definitely the POWER!!!
    check out all the petty little power struggles in some of the many schools.

    Even if someone is in it for the money—so what is wrong with that? If that is his impetus to run a good school that people are anxious to get in to, G'd bless him.

  19. Anon 7:10

    It is not illegal to park on your lawn. In some neighborhoods, you may be ordered not to do it if there is a complaint. Not complying with the order may result in a violation. It is not illegal to be in violation.

    In some cases a playgroup may not be "legal" , but in many cases they are. So the sorry commenter who insisted that we call it "illegal day care" (rather than playgroup) is prejudiced and generally ignorant.

    Anon 1:11

  20. Can someone give me the halacha that would allow the "morah" to be mekabel lashon hara against this child? If in fact this is what happened, I personally would count myself lucky that my child would not be exposed to such a "morah." What kind of middos would she be instilling?

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