Wednesday, August 31, 2005

New Cheder in Crown Heights

I saw some information on regarding a new cheder which will be opening in Crown Heights. This made interesting reading in light of the discussions about Yeshivah & Beth Rivkah Colleges which took place on this blog a few weeks ago. You can read the information about Ohr Menachem here (you will need Adobe Acrobat Reader).

While I have a slight problem with the meshichist policy of this new school I was impressed with their general principles and the educational ideas. It looks like a lot of thought has gone into this. Admittedly Ohr Menachem will not be suitable for every family and would probably be "too" chassidish for many in Melbourne. From what I read it doesn't appear to offer any secular studies which would be an issue for me. Nevertheless it was refreshing to see the high standards that they are aspiring to.

Earlier this year a group of chassidishe yungerleit had plans to start a similar cheder/school. From what I understand their principles were very similar to the Ohr Menachem school. Unfortunately they were coerced into giving up this plan and have to make do with Yeshivah College. The point is that they wanted a more intense chassidish education, with all that implies, rather than just a general frum Jewish education (which Yeshivah provides in principle). I do not know all the details of this incident so cannot say too much - I am happy to hear about it as long as what is said are facts and not conjecture.

When the new principal is finally appointed let us hope that he has the will and is strong enough to make some positive changes in a practical way to the hashkofa of Yeshivah College. The basic principles of the school are sound but it needs a strong hand at the helm to bring things back to the way they should be.

Either that or a concerted effort has to be made to start new Chabad schools.