Monday, December 23, 2019

Yaffed's press conference responding to the revelation of foot-dragging by the city and state in taking action to ensure Yeshivas provide an adequate education to their students

One day after a Department of Investigation inquiry revealed that in 2017, the Mayor had delayed the release of an interim report into the quality of the education received by Ultra-Orthodox Yeshivas students in exchange for the Legislature extending his control over the public schools, the NYC Department of Education finally released its letter to the State Education Department, summarizing the results of its long-awaited investigation into ultra-orthodox Yeshivas.

Even as the DOE letter reported that only two of 28 Yeshivas they visited provided anywhere near a substantially equivalent education compliant with state law, as found via pre-announced visits that ended last spring, they also soft-pedaled the results, with the Chancellor writing that, "The DOE recognizes and applauds the significant progress made as a result of the proactive steps many schools have taken. The DOE is committed to working collaboratively with the schools to assist them as they continue on the path of providing improved instruction."  More on the letter from the Forward, Gothamist and Politico.

In response, Yaffed held a well-attended press conference this morning.  Here is a story about today's presser from the Daily News.

Abbreviated excerpts of the points made are below in the form of  tweets; first from Naftuli Moster, Executive Director of Yaffed, who organized the formal complaint of Yeshiva graduates issued four years ago and has been pressing the state and the city to take action ever since.

Then David Bloomfield, professor of education policy and law at Brooklyn College, who maintains that by interfering in the Yeshiva investigation the mayor himself violated the law, as well as important support expressed for the city and the state to take strong and immediate action, expressed by State Senator Robert Jackson, former Manhattan Borough President Ruth Messenger, and Beatrice Weber, a mom and a grandmother, who is suing the DOE and the Yeshiva that her son attends for educational neglect.

I spoke briefly about the fact that though it is nearly 2020,  it is shameful how thousands of NYC children are still receiving schooling that was basically designed in the middle ages - with high school students consigned to study the Talmud 12 hours a day, with no instruction in English, math, social studies or science -- and with the mayor refusing to take steps to address this for the most selfish of political reasons.

Below the tweets  are the full, powerful statements Naftuli and Ms. Weber made at the presser. 

No comments: