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Between the Lines

The news from Palestine that the Executive of the Jewish Agency has closed down a Jewish school in the Colony Kfar Saba simply because the colonists were not prompt in paying their contributions toward the educational budget will create a painful impression among those Jews who are interested in Jewish education.

It is difficult to understand why in this time of prosperity in Palestine such a drastic step had to be taken by the Jewish Agency. It is hard to believe that any responsible Jewish leader would take it upon his conscience to throw 100 Jewish children out of school and to deprive them of education because of a paltry sum which was not paid in time.

A MYSTERIOUS CASE

The entire incident seems to be even more mysterious when it is taken into consideration that officially the Executive of the Jewish Agency has nothing to do with the educational system in Palestine. Officially the entire Jewish educational system is concentrated fully in the hands of the Vaad Leumi, the Jewish National Council. If anybody were to react to the nonpayment of the Kfar Saba colony towards the educational system, it should have been the Vaad Leumi, and not the Executive of the Jewish Agency.

The mystery surrounding the incident in Kfar Saba—the first incident of its kind in Palestine—may perhaps be explained by the fact that the Kfar Saba colony is not among those favored by the present Executive. It is in Kfar Saba that strikes have repeatedly been prepared during the last two years by the Histadruth. It is in Kfar Saba that the colonists are freely employing Revisionist labor. It is in Kfar Saba that Arabs work on Jewish fields, and it is in Kfar Saba that the resistance to the Laborites who control the present Executive has been stronger than in any other colony.

EDUCATION AND DELINQUENCY

Whether the Executive is right or wrong in its attitude towards Kfar Saba as a whole, there is no justification for depriving the Jewish children there of education. More than in any other country in the world the Jewish child in Palestine is in need of education. Surrounded by Arab children he is exposed to inferior influence which can be combatted by the Jewish school only. The closing down of the only school in the colony is too severe a measure.

The growing delinquency among Jewish children in Tel Aviv, about which the entire Palestine press is complaining, should have been taken into consideration by the Executive of the Jewish Agency in the case of Kfar Saba before it threw the Jewish children there out of school. At a time when delinquency among the Jewish children in Tel Aviv is reaching the stage of crime, a responsible Jewish institution such as the Jewish Agency should have thought twice before adding another 100 children to the growing army of “wild” children.

In all probability the parents in Kfar Saba will see to it that their children receive education in ways other than through the supervision of the Vaad Leumi. It is only logical to assume that the parents of Kfar Saba may open their own school. Such a precedent contains the danger of being followed up also by other colonies which are not entirely satisfied with the present school system controlled by the Executive of the Jewish Agency. Is it in the interests of Jewish education in Palestine that the Agency should help to break up the concentrated supervision over the Jewish schools.

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