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$50,000 Legacy at Stake in School Issue

A discussion as to Jewish educational methods has arisen here, which involves the use or forfeit of a $50,000 bequest.

Recently, a movement was started to unite the Clinton Street Talmud Torah, conducted under Orthodox auspices, with the Barnert Memorial Hebrew Free School, conducted under Reform auspices. Essentially this involves an uniform curriculum. The Talmud Torah has utilized the ‘Ivrith B’Ivrith’ or Hebrew into Hebrew method of translation, while the Barnert school employs the method of Hebrew translation, while the Barnert school employs the method of Hebrew translated into English.

Now, discovery has been made that there is a stipulation both in the charter of the Hebrew Free School and in the will of its original donor whose name it bears, the late Nathan Barnert, former Mayor and outstanding civic and communal leader, making specific command that the method of teaching shall always be Hebrew into English.

The will stipulates that unless the Hebrew School complies strictly with all the provisions set forth, then Barner’s bequest of $50,000 and certain other sums left in trust for maintenance expenses of the school, shall revert to his estate.

Benjamin Horwich, head of the Barnert school, has asserted that it would be inadvisable for his institution to adopt another means of teaching in view of the financial loss it would incur in not adhering to the stipulation. However, both schools are anxious to reach an agreement and they have designated representative committees to confer.

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