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Monday, May 04, 2009

Should We Pat Them on the Back?

The newest installment in the ongoing tuition series in the New Jersey Jewish Standard seems more like an infomerical than a frank discussion of reality.

Five Bergen County principals have kindly written the Jewish Standard in an op-ed to tell us:
  • The children are counting on us to provide the current standard of Modern Orthodox education [Thanks for the guilt trip!],
  • The schools have made significant cuts we should confuse cuts with "trimming the fat" as all of the services offered are educational necessities [Great, more guilt.],
  • The schools really are actually doing a great job containing costs because they provide a dual education for significantly less per student than surrounding public schools [Perhaps a pat on the back is really in order? Perhaps we have nothing to complain about? Given that great amount of inefficiency in public education, I'm not quite sure this is the benchmark to brag about. If anyone is interested in my own take on a "dual curriculum" you can read this past post, Is Jewish Education Inherently More Expensive? Don't forget that many services benefiting private school students, from busing to therapies, are reflected in public school budgets].
  • The schools try very hard to make Jewish education affordable by making millions of dollars in scholarships available. The schools will continue to do this and parents having "financial difficulties" should avail themselves. [Note to principals: Just because many of us can't afford the schools doesn't mean we are having "financial difficulties." Am I in a bad mood, or am I sensing a disconnect? And, let's not pretend that more financial assistance for some means rising tuition for others.]
  • The schools are meeting as part of a joint committee to explore new avenues of funding for [Bergen County] yeshivot. "Concrete plans are being laid" and recommendations will be made soon. [Anyone want to guess what recommendations are coming?]

Now that the infomercial is over. . . . . . . . anyone want to talk about real change before it reality slaps us in the face? (Sorry to be pessimistic. It is that type of day/month/year).

49 comments:

tesyaa said...

To be fair ... you can't expect wholesale change from those who would be put out of business by wholesale change.

If your point is that they will be put out of business anyway, should the situation continue as it is now -- well, there is such a thing as Denial.

SephardiLady said...

Agreed tesyaa. But if the radical change is coming (and I believe it is), you would be marketing a new model, rather than writing PR for the horse and buggy.

Thinking said...

The cuts will come this coming year. Unfortunately, they will only come after the first 1-2 payrolls can't be met. This may currently be tolerated in some communities where not paying teachers has become the norm, but this trend will now move into some of the communities where the teachers will not tolerate it. Benefactors, who at one time may have been willing to "fill in the gaps" to cover payrolls are no longer able to do so. Remember the school where teachers went on strike last year, because they were not paid? That is going to happy multiple times in the coming year.
My only hope is that if there are those with means that are willing to bail the schools out, they will only be willing to do so if serious budget cuts are made too.

It's sad, we all see it coming, yet no one seems to be doing anything to stop it in time. Th YU initiative, while a good idea, is currently focused on saving on energy bills. This is the equivalent of Obama cutting $100 million of spending out of a $3+ trillion budget.

Things schools can still do to may it through 2009-10:
1)Immediately cut 20% from the coming year's budget. Yes, it is late to tell staff members that they don't have jobs for next year, but it is still better than having them work and not paying them. Cut mailings (use email!), photcopying and other expenditures where there are other options.

2) Cap teacher tuition credit to a fixed amount (i.e. $20k) or limit to 2 children. How does it make sense that a teacher with 5 children gets the same benefit as the one with 2? The one with 5 children is getting a $50K+ tuition credit while the one with 2 gets $20k+! This is neither equitable nor fiscally manageable.

Dave said...

The cynic in me says that things won't change until schools start actually failing.

Until that point, people will continue trying to patch over the flaws in the existing model, and insist that just a little work (or fundraising) will make it possible.

Ezzie said...

This is the equivalent of Obama cutting $100 million of spending out of a $3+ trillion budget.Amen. Amazing, though, how many people fall for both.

The cynic in me says that things won't change until schools start actually failing.The realist in me says the same thing!

On the flip side, though, not every school is overspending.

Dave said...

Even if the schools aren't overspending, that isn't enough.

Let us take a hypothetical school.

Average class size is 24, and the average student sees 4 different teachers. Younger students might only see one or two, High School students might see six.

Let us assume that our tuition is $6,000 per student per year. We have a revenue stream of only $36,000 per teacher, per year. Even if we assume that we can fund all support staff, taxes, benefits, books and materials, and the physical plant at 25% of the per teacher salary, that still means we are paying the teachers $27,000 per year. And that 25% figure is a pipe dream, so there would have to have been some kind of an endowment to make up the difference.

A private school education, even assuming perfect fiscal discipline, is going to be expensive.

For anyone who isn't in the far end of the income bell curve, you simply cannot combine a private school education and a large family.

baruch said...

Dave - you are a funny guy - $6,500 a year tuition ? in Bergen county where these five principles preside over some of the most expensive yeshivos in the united sates - elementary school tuition for one child is almost $15,000 per year (including all the cute add-ons i.e. application fee, building fund, security fee)

These principals are basically saying either you are in the top 5% of the nation financially and can afford our rolls royce school or go to public school or beg for a scholarship (they will determine what you can afford to pay) - why not offer those representing 95% of the nation financially a yeshiva they can afford without a security guard at the front door and building expansion every several years

oh one more message to the principals - just because you can not afford $15,000 per child in after tax dollars does not mean you are suffering financially - it means you earn what 95% of americans earn

Lion of Zion said...

"anyone want to talk about real change"

well to tie into profk's recent post on transparency, did the principals specify what cuts (and how much) they made

Dave said...

The top 5% of household income in the United States would be an income of $150,000/yr or higher.

Even at $150,000/yr, you cannot put a large family through private schooling.

Mike S. said...

Dave: Your arithmetic is wrong. The teachers also see more than one class. So that if the average kid has 4 teachers, and the average teacher teaches 4 classes, each kid still has to account for 1/24th of a salary (plus other expenses.) In my kids' school for instance, at the elementary level, each of the classes has two main teachers, one for Jewish studies and one for secular; each teacher teaches two classes. Plus there are 5 specialty teachers split among 12 classrooms. Thus, each class must pay for 17/12 of a salary, plus a proportional share of central costs (administration and plant) plus supplies.

Dave said...

Ahh, you're correct. So much for quick back of the envelope calculations.

Hmmmnnn. That gives us more room to work. If we went with a 50% overhead model (i.e. double the salary to cover the overhead), we'd get a $72,000 average teaching salary.

Is that 50% actually accurate? Does anyone know what percentage of teaching staff salaries the supplies, taxes, benefits, physical plant, and support staff actually come to?

Ezzie said...

I was going to say that about the teachers to Dave as well. It should be workable, but I'm betting that the physical space - building, upkeep, property taxes if applicable, etc. are much larger than you might think.

Lion of Zion said...

EZZIE:

there was an article by a principal in last week's Jewish Week where he stated that 80% of the budget is for teachers' salaries.

Dave in DC said...

If you want to get a bit more in depth with the discussion, there's actually a sample day school budget (albeit from 2002) at http://www.peje.org/docs/samplebudget.pdf

It doesn't have a size of the school, number of teachers or anything like that, but given that they have $4.2M in gross tuition, you could assume a 350 kid school with $15K average tuition. With a staff of 30 teachers (1:12 teacher/student ratio), that would yield average teacher salaries of $65K... higher than the national average of around $40K or even the NY avg or $50K, but for an urban area with specialized skills and no pension, maybe $65K is appropriate.

You can see there that total personnel costs make up 65% of the overall budget, yielding a 2:1 "tooth-to-tail" ratio, as the military would call it. That means the 50% assumption above is spot on at first glance.

But TEACHER salaries are only 33%, which means the "raw" ratio (what teachers see on their paychecks versus the school expenditures) are actually 1:2 and for every teacher earning $50K/year, this sample school needs $150K of revenue!

Where does the rest of the money go? Well administrative and maintenance staff and benefits for all staff make up another third of the budget. Another sixth is scholarships (which seems low to me) and the final sixth is miscellaneous (supplies, building, food, utilities, technology, etc).

(Note, tuition covers 86% of this sample budget, not 100%, which complicates the math a bit.)

The Rebbetzin's Husband said...

One thought on these tuition-based calculations:

I advocate fiscal responsibility and developing new models to replace the current system, but we should not expect any private school to be a tuition-for-product exchange.

In the secular as well as Christian world, private schools solicit funds/endowments from the community and alumni; the Jewish world is no different in this regard.

Jewish education has long (and we're talking millenia, not decades) been viewed as a communal priority, and its stability has always depended on communal contributions, from people who were not parents.

I'm not saying that the answer is to amp up fundraising and ignore the need for new models. But I am saying that we should not expect the answer to absolve the Jewish community of its need to fund education through fundraising.

Thinking said...

Re: Salaries as a percent of budget.
Salaries are, by far, the largest budget item, which is why that is where the cuts need to come from.

TRH - Agreed that the community has to fund the schools. That just puts the onus on the schools to determine, based on their parents and their socioeconomic status, what a reasonable amount of tuition they can expect per average family and create a budget based on that number.

JLan said...

"even the NY avg or $50K"

A first year teacher with an MA in the NYC public schools will earn more than $50k (keep in mind that professional certification in NY, which you need after at most 5 years, requires a Masters). That isn't to say that most yeshiva teachers in NY have an MA or MS or certification(though that is the case at some schools), but then again, not all yeshivas in NY pay $50k either.

Al said...

The communal obligation is to teach our children Torah... for that they need Hebrew, Aramaic and Judaic studies. There is ZERO communal obligation to teach children biology.

Talmud Torah for the 95% that can't afford day school is critical, and should be free (or near free) and paid for out of communal funds.

That makes the community Yotzei it's obligations, and lets the private schools compete to offer an immersive environment.

There are almost ZERO Orthodox Talmud Torah options... just Chabad which is its own can of worms.

In magical Eastern Europe, the wealthy employed private tutors, same as the wealthy Christians, but in the Jewish world, the wealthy paid for communal Cheder schools that taught religion to poor Jewish boys... NOT chemistry and biology to middle class Jewish men and women.

Lion of Zion said...

JLAN:

comparing public schools and yeshivot is not fair. yeshivah teachers (at least in e.s.) generally work 8-12 or 12-4:30 (give or take a little). and then there are all the half days where yeshivah teachers work even fewer hours. finally, some schools have a shorter calendar than the public schools, so there are more outright vacation days to begin with. so obviously a yeshivah teacher will be paid less.

actually, it would be interesting to adjust for hours worked and see if yeshivah teachers are in fact being payed more than p.s. teachers.

on the other hand, public school teachers get better health/retirement benefits and are unionized (no one should underestimate this benefit). but on the other hand, yeshivot have better vacation benefits (and often tuition benefits of some sort as well).

anyway, the comparison is really not so clear.

Al:

many frum families sent their kids to public schools in pre-war europe.

REBBETZIN'S HUSBAND:

to add to Al: the larger community has never been expected to pay such a high price even for the jewish component of education. jewish education in europe was no where as comprehensive and protracted (in terms of daily hours and number of years) as what we know. also, as minimal as education was in many cases for boys, for girls it was even less (or non-existent).

many jews in europe were simple עמי הארץ. i don't think this is the ideal and of course we should want to improve over that situation, but it's not fair to cite Old World precedents without any context or perspective.

Lion of Zion said...

JLAN:

for comparison, my wife's schedule in public school is 8:15 to 3:15 (2:30 on friday). i hope she gets paid more than a yeshivah teacher who works 8 to 12.

Ariella said...

LOZ, morahs who work that type of schedule usually do earn far less than public school teachers. Rebbes, on the other hand, earn more. It is true, though, that rebbes in more RW schools also work Sundays. Salaries for even rebbes of elementary school (with no education degree or any degree for that matter) can hit 80K. There are high school rebbeim getting over 100K in salary alone, on which they take parsonage and have before tax income paid directly to cover the tuitions of children outside the school they work in. Many pick up additional income at summer camp jobs, tutoring jobs, and even being paid just to learn with boys whose fathers do not want to be bothered.

The Rebbetzin's Husband said...

Al, Lion-
Why is Europe your model? I'm talking about going back to Yehoshua ben Gamla, and the entire community hiring melamdim for the kids.

As far as the difference between Jewish education and vocational or liberal arts education - Agreed. But in the old days (and, again, I mean pre-Europe) your vocational training was an apprenticeship and your liberal arts training was non-existent. It was certainly not a secular educational environment.

Lion of Zion said...

REBBETZIN'S HUSBAND:

"Why is Europe your model?"

because i don't know anything about yehoshua ben gamla. :) (yes, i know it's nothing to smile about, but hey, i blame my ignorance on being an MO day school product :) )

regarding communal supported "universal" education in antiquity:
a) from what age until what age
b) how many hours a day and how many days a year
c) girls too?
d) what athletics and other extra-curriculars were oferred?
etc.

ARIELLA:

"being paid just to learn with boys whose fathers do not want to be bothered."

can't be bothered or busy working 2 jobs to pay for tuition?

"morahs who work that type of schedule usually do earn far less than public school teachers."

what are the numbers for morah? and are we talking about seminary girls or a master's degree in education

The Rebbetzin's Husband said...

Lion-
The point is not in the specifics of the schools he instituted. I cite him as an example to demonstrate that communal support is expected to support whatever Jewish education is necessary for the children of the community.
So, for example, the same poskim who have ruled that women must be taught limudei kodesh as boys are taught limudei kodesh, would require the community support both equally.

Lion of Zion said...

RH:

ok, communal support is expected, but to what extent? and what model?

Ariella said...

LOZ I said fathers who can't be bothered because I know who these boys are and what their fathers do; they were not working 2 jobs. Think about it: does it make sense to pay a rebbe $50-$100 an hour to learn with your son if you are only earning that amount and possibly even less at your job? My husband, who was gone 12 hours a day for his job, learned and still learns with our son regularly. He even taught him layning for his bar mitzvah. It's not so much a matter of an individual's time as inclination.

Al said...

TRH, because I'm discussing what IS our communal obligation, and it is a LOT LESS than PreK-12 Day School for all regardless of ability to pay.

I think that most people would be better served by the secular school system, primarily because our alternative school system is terrible. The best MO Day Schools are presumably decent, but most of us face options that are horrendous... the local schools here charge about 80% of what the TOP secular private schools charge while offering an inferior product than the public schools.

Charter w/ Hebrew Immersion offer tremendous potential... because that would mean that you aren't teaching Hebrew, just Judaics. Younger children would probably benefit from a simple Sunday School + Youth Minyan with an educational component in the synagogue, with after school also an option. I think that you could probably handle PreK - 3 with that, and Jewish "after school camps" with art projects, etc., would let parents that work after Jewish after school care. For children NOT in a school teaching Hebrew, a 90 minute/date Monday-Thursday + 60 minutes on Sunday school after the weekly Parsha-based Sunday school would probably be at least as adequate as what we have now.

By grade 4, we should be teaching more intensively as the children are ready. I'm not impressed by second graders able to Davin from memory, I'd be more impressed with 4th graders with enough Hebrew proficiency to pick up a Sidur and read. We could be getting more intensive.

Language is easier to learn at a young age. Logic and reasoning (required for intensive study) is easier at a more mature age. A Sephardi style youth minyan with the service all chanted would teach kids far better than our current approach. The reason oral histories were traditionally in song/poetry is because the mind memorizes song better than prose... Ashkenazim

Get more intensive as the kids are ready, but develop language immersion in preschool when they can learn like a native, basics of Hebrew language in early elementary school, and mastery of Aramaic and Biblical Hebrew should come easier.

Taking the burden of tuition off our middle class would provide tremendous stress relief, and give people more time to handle the rest of things, which would let it be more supplmental.

As tuition gets more expensive, people work harder to stay afloat, which leaves less time for transmitting Judaism PROPERLY (father->son, mother->daughter), and has turned our religion over to the Rabbeim, whose track record of taking care of our people over the last 1000 years has been lacking to say the least.

Lion of Zion said...

AL:

don't get me wrong. i have my issues with "the rabbis." but your last sentence is so ridiculous.
once again i find myself agreeing with some of your sentiments, only to be turned off by wild statements. (and in case you're not aware, RH is a rabbi.)

Lion of Zion said...

ARIELLA:

"Think about it"

it's not often that i'm accused of being דן לכף זכות, and here you try to prevent me from doing so.

anyway, there are a number of reasons why a father who has the time would nonetheles hire a tutor. but $100 seems a bit excessive.

i plan to have a post later this week about managing a long work day with family time. i'd love to read about how your husband managed 12 hour day and time with the kids.

(i started to teach my son to lein about a year ago, although he still has another 9 years to go.)

Lion of Zion said...

ARIELLA:

p.s. as a former bar mitzvah tutor, i resent your attempts to deprive of us a parnasah :)

Anonymous said...

LOZ - anyway, there are a number of reasons why a father who has the time would nonetheles hire a tutor. but $100 seems a bit excessive.Yes, lots of reasons. For example, the father could be unqualified, simply not knowledgeable enough to properly learn with a child at a certain age (maybe he is a chozer betshuva, maybe someone who never had a yeshiva education, or someone who simply wasted time in yeshiva). Of maybe the father has certain views, potentially apikores-like views, that he would prefer not to pass to his child. Maybe the father finds that he can't handle his child very well while learning, and finds that someone else can do a much better job. Maybe the mother can learn with the child much better than the father (I happen to know someone like this). Maybe the father doesn't remember how to lein and never really got into leining after his bar mitzvah (me, me, me!!!).

Mark

tesyaa said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
tesyaa said...

Mark, I agree with most of your comment, but a father with potentially blasphemous views should think very hard whether he should be indoctrinating his child with a yeshiva education, much less paying tuition + tutors.

Pesach said...

As a mechanech and a father of 6, I follow these conversations, avidly, though often with nothing to add. Something obviously must give. One thing I do want to stress is that public is not and can not be part of the solution. Whatever degree of social isolation that existed in Europe that allowed for the Jewish to remain separate, does not exist today. That which public school kids are exposed to (excuse the unintentional pun) as early as 4th grade makes it untenable to allow our kids to be in school with them. What worked in Europe 70 years is no longer workable.

ProfK said...

I'd just like to point out that the very fact that five yeshiva principals found it necessary to respond publicly in the newspaper already represents an element of change. That they are announcing that changes have and will be made is different from the usual approach, which is to tell parents and the community nothing. Let those parents who have been actively legislating for change and looking for new models take heart. Because they have banded together and because their actions have been taken publicly, with written coverage, the principals have had no choice but to respond in kind--publicly. Now is not time for those parents to sit back and do nothing--ride the wave. Shoot back that you want the actual evidence of change--the facts and figures.

JLan said...

"JLAN:

comparing public schools and yeshivot is not fair. yeshivah teachers (at least in e.s.) generally work 8-12 or 12-4:30 (give or take a little). and then there are all the half days where yeshivah teachers work even fewer hours. finally, some schools have a shorter calendar than the public schools, so there are more outright vacation days to begin with. so obviously a yeshivah teacher will be paid less.

actually, it would be interesting to adjust for hours worked and see if yeshivah teachers are in fact being payed more than p.s. teachers.

on the other hand, public school teachers get better health/retirement benefits and are unionized (no one should underestimate this benefit). but on the other hand, yeshivot have better vacation benefits (and often tuition benefits of some sort as well).

anyway, the comparison is really not so clear."

I'm aware of that. I was responding to Dave in DC, who seemed to be comparing to average teacher salaries across the country and in NYC.

My numbers, however, jibe more with Ariella's. This is true about Rabbeim at some more right wing schools, but also MO schools in general (Limudei Kodesh and general studies alike). Someone mentioned the 990s from MTA and Central a while back- they have a number of teachers who make in the $100k range. Or take the rabbi fired from HAFTR who made so much news- he was working extra hours to make over $100k/year.

I've also seen $100/hour for tutoring (not made it, just seen it). A tip- if you're willing to tutor both bar and bat mitzvah for leining, NYC payments from some Reform and Conservative circles range as high as $200-250/hour.

Avi said...

I can't believe that schools would pay teachers $100K! Shocking! Why can't we get teachers who will work for half that? Why, if they make $100K and they work over the summers and they have working spouses, they'll be... oh, wait. Didn't we all agree in the last thread that it requires a family income between $200 - $300K to have a family of four or five kids? The $100K Rebbe better have either multiple free tuitions (a perk that has been cut way back or eliminated entirely in many schools), the world's most lucrative summer job, or a wife who's a lawyer working at a major firm. Otherwise, they're going to need tuition assistance ...just like the rest of us.

Yeah, I'm defending teacher salaries. Bring it on.

Up Too Early said...

I am a little curious as to where these teachers work who are making $100K. I work in a private school, non-Jewish, where parents have moved from all over the country in order to send their child(ren) her to have their child(ren)'s needs addressed, and I have a Master's in Education (specialty is Reading), and I make $35,700, with my salary frozen for next year, and I just consider myself lucky to have a job.

Thinking said...

Avi-

No one has anything against a teacher or rebbi making $100K per year, other than the fact that those rebbis or teachers will never get paid. Sorry, that's just reality. Salaries need to be based on revenue, not value. A lawyer who is making $250K per year, better be bringing in at least 3x that to keep his job, same for accountants, md's etc.

Now, if you were running a school and could get a great rebbi or teacher for $50K per year vs. one for $100k which would you choose? So why are some rebbis making $100K while others make $50K? That's the $50K question everyone wants answered.

Transparency and accountability. Quantify why schools should pay $100K and you will get plenty of support.

JLan said...

"I am a little curious as to where these teachers work who are making $100K. I work in a private school, non-Jewish, where parents have moved from all over the country in order to send their child(ren) her to have their child(ren)'s needs addressed, and I have a Master's in Education (specialty is Reading), and I make $35,700, with my salary frozen for next year, and I just consider myself lucky to have a job."

For the most experienced: SAR, Ramaz, MTA/Central, HAFTR, off the top of my head. All NYC/NYC area schools- in other areas of the country, I don't think anyone's making that much.

Anonymous said...

tesyaa - Mark, I agree with most of your comment, but a father with potentially blasphemous views should think very hard whether he should be indoctrinating his child with a yeshiva education, much less paying tuition + tutors.Blasphemous???? Chas VeShalom, no! But, for example, my view is that Rabbanim in Chutz Laaretz need to get together and nullify the extra day of yom tov on the shalosh regalim. I feel very strongly about this for various reasons (not the least of which is that is it completely unnecessary, I believe that Judaism isn't always improved by changing minhagim or other things into halacha just on a whim, and that it is extremely taxing to Jews that have to live in the modern working world). But, I accept the current view of the Rabbanim because that is how we live. I also accept that it isn't likely to happen in my lifetime and that a schism (which, unfortunately, seems to be in progress* anyway) in the Orthodox community may occur before it can even be thought about.

* I know of many Charedim that in essence don't consider MO to be O or even J in many cases.

tesyaa said...

Mark, I only used the word blasphemous as a translation, however imperfect, of your expression "apikoros-like views." But it sounds like we are on the same page regarding yom tov sheni, at the very least! How do you feel about Ashkenazim eating kitniyos? For a long time I have jokingly encouraged my daughters to marry sefardim and move to Israel. They, at least, have the opportunity to take on different minhagim.

But I don't see how having these views is anything like apikorsus.

Anonymous said...

Gary Rosenblatt, the Editor of The Jewish Week, has weighed in on this debate.

His editorial can be found here:

http://www.thejewishweek.com/viewArticle/c52_a15707/Editorial__Opinion/Gary_Rosenblatt.html

He opens with a call to recognize that the American Jewish day school model is breaking, if not already broken. He advocates exploring other models and solutions and acknowledges that there is no "one" solution.

While many will take issue with certain of his comments, the editorial is a breath of fresh air for its honesty and call to confront the problem.

Pesach said...

Thinking,

Why should schools pay the higher wage? Very simple, rabbeim deserve to be able to make a living also. People used to complain that it was only schleppers who became rabbeim. Start underpaying and that will become the reality.

Dave said...

What breath of fresh air?

He's calling for exactly the same solution that the schools are using now, "someone else should pay".

Except this time, he wants the taxpayer to be the one paying.

Anonymous said...

tesyaa - Mark, I only used the word blasphemous as a translation, however imperfect, of your expression "apikoros-like views." But it sounds like we are on the same page regarding yom tov sheni, at the very least! How do you feel about Ashkenazim eating kitniyos? For a long time I have jokingly encouraged my daughters to marry sefardim and move to Israel. They, at least, have the opportunity to take on different minhagim.

But I don't see how having these views is anything like apikorsus.
[space]

You and I don't view it as such, but those teaching our children usually do.

I think Kitniyot ought to be permissible, certainly in Israel as minhag hamakom. But I don't eat kitniyot on Pesach in my house because I follow my Rabbanim. Though we made lots of exceptions when in Israel, for example, we used soybean oil, and I noticed some very frum Ashkenazim using it as well. We also permitted the kids to eat certain things that said "LeOchlei Kitniyot Bilvad", like Pesach ice cream bars, and similar things. One time we even ate at my brother-in-laws mothers house, they are Teymanim, and eat certain kinds of kitnoyot on Pesach. We didn't eat any mamash kitniyot, but things that might have been cooked with some, we ate.

And we did NOT make a second seder the years that we were in Israel!!! That is ridiculous.

Mark

Anon819 said...

Mark and Tesyaa, it is always so fantastic to be reading the ocmments here and come across someone who expresses exactly what I (and/or my DH) think about something. Thanks!

Lion of Zion said...

THINKING:

"Salaries need to be based on revenue"

salaries are also determined by supply.
so it depends what type of staff you want in the school. if you are fine with a kollel grad, then there is no reason to pay big bucks, as there is an endless supply of kollel grads with no other marketable skills. (this should not be misconstrued as a comment denigrating the teaching abilities of kollelniks, but rather an observation that there are many of them who can't do anything else.)
if on the other you hand you want the rebbe to also have a PhD or other advanced degree (not uncommon in MO schools), then the labor pool gets much smaller and you will have to pay commensurately.
same story with general studies teachers.

Anonymous said...

Mark and Tesyaa, it is always so fantastic to be reading the comments here and come across someone who expresses exactly what I (and/or my DH) think about something. Thanks!You are welcome. This is one of my all-time favorite blogs, and is, in fact, the first on my list in my blog bookmark folder. Believe it or not, there are many others who think like we do. Unfortunately most of our institutions have been "taken over" (though with almost everyone's acquiescence) by people who have moved towards the right over the last generation or two.

Mark