Have your say

We welcome ideas, evidence and opinions to enrich the community conversation about our Jewish education. All comments will be moderated, and disrespectful posts will not be published. The Jewish Education Foundation also reserves the right not to publish comments that identify particular schools or individuals.

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  1. Zee says:
    I’m concerned about the other half of the Jewish children in Victoria. They do not have any access to Jewish education. In addition, they are vulnerable targets in the public schools as recent events have shown at Brighton College and West Hawthorn Primary which are but two examples. The best solution to the high cost of Jewish education would involve these forgotten children and their families. Many would be happy to pay for a quality Jewish addition to public schools. We can’t all live in the vicinity of Caulfield!
    The tragedy of this situation is not the high costs involved, but that there are any costs! Jewish education should be free because Jewish children are the most impority priority of the Jewish community. Jewish philanthropists donate billions to secular institutions. Studies show, on average, they donate less than 10% to Jewish organizations. We are such a small minority yet we forget -“If I am not for myself, who will be for me?” Those donors, and Jewish donor supported organizations should be reminded of this and their feet should be held to the fire!
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    I’m concerned about the other half of the Jewish children in Victoria. They do not have any access to Jewish education. In addition, they are vulnerable targets in the public schools as recent events have shown at Brighton College and West Hawthorn Primary which are but two examples. The best solution to the high cost of Jewish education would involve these forgotten children and their families. Many would be happy to pay for a quality Jewish addition to public schools....
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  2. rburdo says:
    There are two issues which are the implication of the current situation in Victoria, which may impact the future of Jewish education here. Are they taken into account?

    1. Quite a few Jewish families with kids are considering leaving Victoria for at least a few years after all what we’ve been through. The burden of losing two school years, mental health damage and economical damage is too big to burden any more – and given the attitude of this government, it may repeat. Add to these employees who have no income now due to the vaccination mandate.

    2. Even without Covid, the Victorian government and bureaucracy are not the best friends of private schools. Given their Marxist/woke ideology, it is not impossible that the state will make the lives of private schools harder – whether by cutting budgets, interfering with the curriculum or other restrictions, in order to push parents to the public system.
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    There are two issues which are the implication of the current situation in Victoria, which may impact the future of Jewish education here. Are they taken into account? 1. Quite a few Jewish families with kids are considering leaving Victoria for at least a few years after all what we’ve been through. The burden of losing two school years, mental health damage and economical damage is too big to burden any more – and given the attitude of this government,...
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  3. rburdo says:
    Hi,

    I know this is not the place to discuss politics, but the future of Melbourne’s Jewish day schools depends on the political situation.

    First, I hear recently about more and more Jewish families with kids who are planning to leave Victoria, whether for a few years of permanently, following all the pain and distress cause by the Victorian government during the last 18 months – the loss of almost two school years, the horrible mental health damage to kids and adults alike due to the long and strict lockdowns, the economic damage – and the estimation that Victoria will have more of that. More families leaving mean less students. in addition to all the trends which are regularly discussed in this forum.

    Another issue is the future of private schools and faith-based school in particular in Victoria. Given the progressive/Marxist/woke ideology which is dominant in the government and bureaucracy here, it is possible that during the next few years we’ll see erosion of the freedoms and the resources that the Jewish school have – whether this is less funding, coercion of agendas which contradicts the ethos of these schools, and generally putting pressure on the system in order to push students out to the public system. If this (G-d forbid) happens, all our efforts may be in vain.
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    Hi, I know this is not the place to discuss politics, but the future of Melbourne’s Jewish day schools depends on the political situation. First, I hear recently about more and more Jewish families with kids who are planning to leave Victoria, whether for a few years of permanently, following all the pain and distress cause by the Victorian government during the last 18 months – the loss of almost two school years, the horrible mental health damage to kids...
    More
  4. Hopeful parent says:
    In terms of cost, the Jewish schools in focus here are on par or in excess of Melb’s elite independent schools. As such, they are selective schools that offer a small proportion (20-25%) of students whose socio-economic bracket is below this, the opportunity to attend at a reduced rate. What is the experience like for this minority of students who take this path? I don’t know the answer but I suspect there are some negatives. This is why I feel this is not the right choice for our family. Perhaps others feel the same. I feel that we have lost sight of what our ancestors set out to do in establishing these schools – to provide a Jewish education, and the focus has moved more toward VCE scores. Opening up our schools to greater economic diversity will require a huge shift. I watch with great interest and wish you every success to make this a reality for our great community.
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    In terms of cost, the Jewish schools in focus here are on par or in excess of Melb’s elite independent schools. As such, they are selective schools that offer a small proportion (20-25%) of students whose socio-economic bracket is below this, the opportunity to attend at a reduced rate. What is the experience like for this minority of students who take this path? I don’t know the answer but I suspect there are some negatives. This is why I feel...
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  5. Seraphya says:
    A focus on excellence in Jewish education, does not demand a Jewish full day school.
    While children should be taught certain Jewish subjects separately by ideology, there is no reason not to have greater mixing for secular subjects as well as some Jewish subjects such as Hebrew. While some might not want their children learning Gemara or Yiddish, or want an approach to tanakh that suits their ideology, that isn’t a reason to completely sever Jewish studies from different schools. There should just be options for which ideology or subject students enroll in.

    Doing things this way would mean that students who went to state schools could be included in the Jewish schools as well. If parents don’t want to pay for private school for secular subjects but don’t want to miss out on the opportunities of a high level of Jewish learning and a Jewish peer group they would have the option to join a Jewish school for Jewish studies. This unbundling will allow those who want a Jewish school experience but don’t want to spend the money on a full private school or feel the financial pressure of scraping by with communal assistance for a full private school, when they weren’t after a private school, but a Jewish school to stay in or join the system.
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    A focus on excellence in Jewish education, does not demand a Jewish full day school. While children should be taught certain Jewish subjects separately by ideology, there is no reason not to have greater mixing for secular subjects as well as some Jewish subjects such as Hebrew. While some might not want their children learning Gemara or Yiddish, or want an approach to tanakh that suits their ideology, that isn’t a reason to completely sever Jewish studies from different schools....
    More
  6. Karen Diamond says:
    In regard to the VCE school concept. In the event that this model picks up momentum, I am concerned that the topic of this conversation implicitly eliminates the VCAL, VET and IB options without having thoroughly evaluated and included all their relative merits. A community school needs to accommodate the vast needs of a student body. In my opinion, calling this a “VCE school” makes some unhealthy assumptions at this early stage of deliberations. Perhaps refer to it as the “Years 10-12 campus”, or “Senior Secondary Campus” for now?
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    In regard to the VCE school concept. In the event that this model picks up momentum, I am concerned that the topic of this conversation implicitly eliminates the VCAL, VET and IB options without having thoroughly evaluated and included all their relative merits. A community school needs to accommodate the vast needs of a student body. In my opinion, calling this a “VCE school” makes some unhealthy assumptions at this early stage of deliberations. Perhaps refer to it as the...
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    1. Site Manager says:

      Thanks Karen for your suggestion. Will be interested to see how many others also share the same thoughts.