Lawsuit by ex-haredim against haredi schools thrown out

Ex-haredi Jews sought damages from haredi educational institutions for failure to teach secular subjects needed for finding employment.

Contact Editor
Gary Willig,

Haredi school
Haredi school
Flash 90

The haredi educational system scored a significant victory when a district court dismissed a lawsuit by former students.

The plaintiffs, young ex-haredim who left the stringent and non-Zionist Orthodox community, sought damages from haredi educational institutions and the State of Israel for failing to provide them with the necessary education to function in the secular world.

Stringent haredi institutions for boys do not teach the core secular subjects mandated in Israeli public schools, that is, math, science, and English. As a result, the plaintiffs claimed, haredim who leave that lifestyle find themselves lacking the basic skills needed to find employment or pursue higher education.

Those opposed to changing the curriculum say that Talmud study teaches students to think and that it is easy for them to make up the lack in subject matter if they wish to do so.

District Court Judge Moshe Bar-Am dismissed all claims from plaintiffs over the age of 25, since the statute of limitations on the claims had passed. Judge Bar-Am also imposed legal fees totaling tens of thousands of shekels on the plaintiffs.

Representatives of the haredi institutions praised the decision and said that the lawsuit was an assault on haredi education and the haredi way of life.