'This American Life' Vs. Tablet On East Ramapo Schools Row

Is a chasidic board gutting the public schools? How two investigations came to different conclusions.

09/16/2014 - 20:00
Staff Writer

The conflict-ridden East Ramapo school board has had plenty of news coverage since chasidic Jews gained a majority and began slashing the budget. Public school parents accuse the board of gutting the district of property, personnel and programs in order to keep taxes low. The board, whose members send their children to private yeshivas, counters that reductions are due to cuts in state funding and that any board — chasidic or not — would be doing the same.

School activists and a board member face off during a meeting in East Ramapo. Courtesy of Adrianne Mathiowetz/This American Life

This American Life Takes On East Ramapo School Kerfuffle

Iconic public radio show dives into debate over chasidic-run public school district.

09/10/2014 - 20:00
Staff Writer

This American Life, the popular radio show known for its quirky, in-depth programs, will air an hour-long program on the conflict-ridden East Ramapo Central Schools District this weekend.

This American Life dives into the East Ramapo schools controversy in this week's episode. Courtesy of This American Life

Some Schools Have Such Chutzpah

Labor Day is over, the school year has started and with it, so have the expectations from some schools that parents volunteer their time either in the building or after school hours.

I appreciate both my own good fortune in having children at all, and I recognize the merit of other parents who devote themselves to supporting their children’s schools.

But I want to at the same time call out the schools that still harbor this expectation of parents.

The word is chutzpahdik.

Schools should examine the assumptions behind their expectation that parents have time to volunteer.

A Teacher’s Magic

Rabbi Baruch Pollack’s 60 years in first grade.
05/23/2011 - 20:00
Associate Editor

In some academic cultures, the best and ambitious rise to the top. They become principals, provosts, deans and professors.

Rabbi Baruch Pollack, at 83, still a teacher, still a jokester, still a magician. Michael Datikash
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