Court, Towns Say No to Hareidi Schools in Secular Areas
Children attending a hareidi religious school in the central Israel town of Kadima protested Sunday, after a court ordered the school closed. The order came after a petition by residents against the school, claiming that it would harm real estate values and cause disturbances in the neighborhood. In addition, the town sought the closure of the school, which it said was in a residential building.
Kadima is a largely secular town, but in recent years a small hareidi religious community has sprung up in the area, much to the chagrin of the secular residents. Until the school in Kadima opened, children were bused to other towns for schooling.
Students protested outside the town's city hall, carrying signs demanding that the municipality recognize their right to an education. There was no comment from the municipality.
In a separate incident, a Hod Hasharon city council member, Nadav Douani, on Sunday proclaimed his opposition to the opening of a school serving the hareidi religious community in one part of town. Hod Hasharon is also largely secular.
According to Douani, the school will “change the makeup and fabric of the community.” The school, he said, “will destroy the status quo in the city and open up a religious war.” Although supporters of the school on the Council said that it would serve Religious Zionist children as well, Douani said that establishing the school was “a sneaky attempt to slip in a hareidi school into Hod Hasharon. And we all know what that means,” he said in an interview.