Warns Parents Not to See Day Schools As Avenue of Escape from Public School Problems

The sharp increase in enrollment in Jewish day schools run by the Conservative movement was cited by a Jewish educator who warned yesterday that parents who enrolled their children “as a device to escape the problems of the public school system” were misinterpreting the purpose of Jewish day schools. Dr. Morton Siegel, director of the department of education of the United Synagogue of America, spoke at the third biennial conference of the Solomon Schecter Day Schools.

He said, “This motive cannot become the rationale for the existence of our day schools. Our day schools are built upon a positive foundation which has as its basis our Jewish tradition, which transcends the problems of the moment and focuses on the imperatives of making Jewish education central to the lives of individuals.”

Dr. Horace Bier, re-elected president of the Solomon Schecter Day School Association at the two day conference, reported that 28 Conservative day schools were established in the past 12 years and that five more will open next September. He predicted 50 Schecter day schools with an enrollment of 10,000 children within the next five years and said “this figure could easily be surpassed if we had larger funds.”

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