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January 31, 2013

Baby Steps And Exclusion: Scandal-Plagued Haredi-Controlled East Ramapo School District Finally Gets Around To Dealing With Trespassing And Security Issues

Daniel SchwartzEast Ramapo’s Scandal-Plagued (and arguably corrupt) haredi-controlled school district finally has begun to act on complaints from parents and community activists about trespassing on school grounds by non-students. But when East Ramapo’s school district finally got around to dealing with the issue this week by calling a meeting to discuss school security, the parents and activists were nowhere to be seen because the meeting was closed to the public.

Daniel Schwartz
East Ramapo's school board president Daniel Schwartz

Baby Steps And Exclusion: Scandal-Plagued Haredi-Controlled East Ramapo School District Finally Gets Around To Dealing With Trespassing And Security Issues
Shmarya Rosenberg • Failedmessiah.com

East Ramapo’s Scandal-Plagued (and arguably corrupt) haredi-controlled school district finally has begun to act on complaints from parents and community activists about trespassing on school grounds by non-students.

The issue first came to head nine months ago when community activists and parents tried to help a principal stop haredi trespassers streaming through a school’s grounds during two days of a Jewish holiday as the school was in session. The school district’s security – which has since been cut – was not on scene on day one and was slow to arrive on day two.

But when East Ramapo’s school district finally got around to dealing with the issue this week by holding a meeting yesterday to discuss school security, the parents and activists were nowhere to be seen because the meeting was closed to the public.

Instead of a public meeting, East Ramapo chose to have an invitation only meeting, claiming to have invited elected officials and representatives from 45 community groups. But only about a dozen people reportedly attended, the Journal News reported.

Schools Superintendent Joel Klein claimed that no one was intentionally excluded from the meeting, and he told the Journal News that invitations were sent to the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, Padres Unidos and the PTA. Members of those three groups made up the bulk of the activists who tried to curtail the haredi trespassing last spring.

The NAACP and Padres Unidos told the Journal News that they did not receive invitations. Neither group knew about the meeting until a reporter told them about it on Tuesday.

Klein said he hopes the school district will get state and federal grant money to boost security.

The school district did not move to deal with the trespassing issue and related security concerns until it was strongly challenged, primarily by the excluded activists, the NAACP and Padres Unidos, in the wake of the Newtown, Connecticut school massacre last month.

No school board members, all of whom are now haredi or Orthodox and none of whom have children in the district’s public schools, attended the meeting.

[Hat Tip: Devorah.]

Comments

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I have a friend who lives there, MO, and he says what is happening, what the frum board is doing is shameful

I'm confused. Is the Superintendent separate from the school board?

Yeshiva of Spring Valley CEO Rabbi Eliezer Stern was invited, yet the parents and activists for many years were not. Why do we have to invite a Ruv to make security decisions for public school kids? I'm tired of having rabbonim make educational decisions for public school kids.

"Klein said he hopes the school district will get state and federal grant money to boost security."

Hassidim steal the funds and then ask the state and federal government to pay for security?

Devorah-You got to milk uncle sam as much as possible its miderayse.

Funny business as usual! The invites for the two most vocal groups, NAACP and Padres Unidos got lost in the mail??? Then, it was discovered by the JN that they were not aware of the meeting and dumb, dumb Klien doesn't pick up the phone to make a personal invite and make a fake apology? Then, Scwartz makes a speech about how sorry he is that the only two non-religious board members quit last week alleging mistreatment by the board.

Nothing to see here folks, just move along. The make believe board is making believe to care...Not!


I don't know why any invitations were sent. This is an issue where the board should have contacted security firms to get ideas and quotes on how to secure the property and *possibly* find a way to create a safe and secure passage for the people in the community to use during the holidays, especially during inclement weather for mothers who are pushing carriages and strollers.

I love how the ERCSD board calls a meeting and no board members are present. It really shows how much they care about the topic/district. Maybe if the public started marching through yeshiva school property during school hours, these exclusive meetings might be more well attended.

Oh...and the Rabbi that was present asked for security...you guessed it, paid for by the taxpayers! You just cannot make this stuff up. We have NO security in the elementary schools...nothing between our little ones but a secretary and a buzzer! No assistant princiapals...they were fired! But the Yeshivas now want the public to supply police. As we all know, if you are from the Yeshiva community, all you have to do is ask the Town Supervisor and viola....you wish is my command! East Ramapo is in the three circles of hell for sure.

That violates the New York State Open Meetings law, which includes school boards. If the board meets, it must be open to the public unless there are special circumstances, such as a personnel issue. And adequate notice must be provided. This doesn't pass the smell test.

That's why I asked if the Superintendent is a member of the Board. Where I reside he is not so the rules of order are different.

No...the Supt. is not a member of the Board...he is a hand puppet of the Board. The meeting, like the Board was a sham. They could care less about fixing the problem, they are just putting lipstick on a pig!

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