I’ve taught at six Jewish day schools. They’re preaching dual loyalty to Israel.


A recent survey by the Anti-Defamation League found that nearly a quarter of Americans believe American Jews are more loyal to Israel than to the United States. Based on my experience teaching at half a dozen Jewish day schools over the past twelve years, I am shocked that the figure is so low. 

Imagine being a non-Jewish employee at one of these schools in New York City, maybe a security guard or a special-education teacher’s aide. You walk into the building and see Israeli flags hanging all over the place. Lessons are delivered in Hebrew — often at the obvious expense of student comprehension. Children sing HaTikvah in the morning with enforced gusto. Israeli soldiers regularly address the student body. Children wear kippot and hoodies emblazoned with the logo of the Israel Defense Forces.

Zionism is messaged in these schools as the most essential attribute of our students’ identity. It’s a huge problem.

I’ve heard teachers or administrators say at assemblies things like “you don’t belong in America,” “Israel is your country” and “the IDF are your soldiers.” When Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu spoke to the United States Congress in opposition to the Iran nuclear deal, against the wishes of President Obama, the high school where I was working cancelled classes to watch “our Prime Minister.” That’s a real quote.

In the six schools at which I have taught, HaTikvah was sung more often than the Pledge of Allegiance or the Star Spangled Banner. Israeli national holidays are taught with a reverence or solemnity that outstrips what is accorded to religious or American ones. Veteran’s Day was never discussed, but Yom HaZikaron, Israel’s Memorial Day, had special projects and assemblies. Many of these schools receive grants from the Avi Chai Foundation, which requires recipients to declare that they “seek to instill in our students an attachment to the State of Israel and its people.”

Read the rest here: https://forward.com/opinion/439563/ive-taught-at-six-jewish-day-schools-theyre-preaching-dual-loyalty-to/

One thought on “I’ve taught at six Jewish day schools. They’re preaching dual loyalty to Israel.

  1. If ANY Jew thinks Israel is their country (for instance, you Sheldon and Miriam Adelman!) then dang it get the hell outta America and move back to Israel! Traitors! (Or are you too damned cowardly to take care of yourselves? Then again, so is your “country” Israel!)

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