NEW YORK (Jul. 7)
An association of New York City yeshiva principals and administrators has appealed to local charitable agencies and the Jewish public at large to help alleviate “the desperate financial plight” of Orthodox Hebrew day schools in the metropolitan area. The association is affiliated with Torah Umesorah, the national society for Hebrew day schools.
A statement issued by the association today called attention to “the paltry salaries that we pay our teachers and the unusually high tuition rates with which we tax our parents and the ever-spiraling costs which we fear will bring us to the gates of disaster.” It declared that “the philanthropic and communal agencies in the Jewish community must become more responsive to our call.”
The statement suggested, in addition, “that funds will also have to be secured from those industries which directly benefit from religious education, such as the kosher food business, and publishers of Hebrew text books and sacred works, amongst others, to help alleviate the financial distress hovering over these institutions.” The association claimed that the schools it represents have a student body of 40,000. Tuition fees average close to $900 which many parents cannot pay. In addition, because of low salaries paid compared to teachers’ salaries in other private and public schools, many of the best teachers in schools in near poverty areas are frequently “pirated” away to suburban schools which offer better pay, the statement said.