Tuesday, January 08, 2008

Hey, it's a start!

I nearly fell out of my chair! Can it be? Or was my blood sugar too messed up from having a fast today and then eating a pile of cookies afterward? No! It's real! I can hardly believe my eyes.

On Vos iz Neias:

Brooklyn, NY - Kudos, School Offers Hope To Potential US Yeshiva Dropouts.

Brooklyn, NY - A new partnership between the educational arm of Chabad and a technical training college will give haredi youth in New York who are at risk of dropping out of yeshiva an alternative course of study where they can learn a trade within an Orthodox environment.

Starting this fall, the new Jewish vocational training school - a partnership between Chabad and International Bramson ORT - will offer boys aged 16-20 looking for an alternative to the traditional yeshiva education a morning curriculum of yeshiva studies and afternoon vocational training.

Students who do not have a high-school diploma will emerge with a GED (general equivalency diploma), and all students will earn a certificate in their chosen area of concentration and an associate of arts degree.

Students will be trained in high-demand fields such as accounting, computer graphics and medical assistant positions. ORT's job placement department will work to place students upon graduation.
'For the last five years, I've been looking for ways to help students who are not naturally suited for a yeshiva program," said Rabbi Nochem Kaplan, director of the Chabad-Lubavitch Education Office of Merkos L'inyonei Chinuch. "The haredi community needs an alternative for people who think differently, we are not made from a cookie cutter. A youngster struggling to fully understand Talmudic logic, the basis of all yeshivot, does he deserve to be penalized?"

Programs that combine vocational training and Torah study required intensive care and financial wherewithal to survive, said Kaplan. Analyzing the weaknesses of past programs for this population has shaped and strengthened the new venture, according to Merkos and ORT.

Read extended article at: [Jpost]

posted by Shlomah Shamos @ 1/06/2008 02:30:00 PM


Now we'll just have to sit back and see how much effort they really put into it.

But hey, it's a start!


Garnel Ironheart said...

LIke any iceberg, the real magnitude of the problem is what you don't see. If they're allowing kids at risk to get an actual education, this says a great deal about how big the problem truly is in their community.

On the other hand, it's a double-edged sword. Any boy from this community who now goes and gets a real job will have trouble getting a shidduch. What good Jewish mama wants her maidel marrying a "guy at risk"?

Ahavah said...

SephardiLady and myself have been beating this bush for a while now, among some few others. But things just cannot go on the way they are. The transition may be painful, but is necessary medicine. If enough people choose common sense over dependency on charity, welfare fraud and ponzi shemes, the tide will turn. Fewer people will support the "full-time learner" lifestyle with their donations except when they personally know the bochur is an exceptionally good speaker and teacher and learner. The dead wood will be trimmed back, and they will either have to get a real job or mooch off their relatives forever -and I don't know about you, but my patience would get pretty thin after a reasonable while.

Part of what I've been saying all along is that the system only has as much power as WE give it. It only has as much money as we give it. It only has as much influence as we let it. If we're content to be sheeple, then so be it - we will deserve what happens to our communities. If we want to save Judaism and our children, then it's going to have to be knocked off that false paradigm and put on a new, stable one.