NAACP challenges Orthodox Jewish dominance of East Ramapo board in high

First of all, the “Cliff Notes” version. :smile:

Basically the Orthodox Jews that control this New York school district are using the public money as a private slush fund for their own kids who attend private yeshiva schools.

The NAACP is suing to try to change school board elections from “at large” to ward based.

There are just so many things wrong in East Ramapo. An electoral method that caters to Orthodox Jews and shuts out black and Latino voters. A cabal of Orthodox Jewish School Board members who are more interested in feeding the private yeshivas than in bringing the public schools up to even a tolerable level. Closing a public school and trying to sell it to be a yeshiva at half its appraised value. Even when the State of New York intervened, it still was sold well under its appraised value to be used as a private yeshiva. Oh, and all of the Orthodox Jewish School Board members own kids attend private yeshiva.

Meanwhile, while the Jewish kids are attending yeshivas funded by public money, the black and Latino kids are attending public schools that are literally falling apart from neglect.

Unfortunately, even if the NAACP wins this lawsuit and forces ward elections, they still won’t be able to break the Orthodox Jewish majority on the school board.

The State of New York needs to step in and realign school districts in such a way as to break the Orthodox Jewish majority. Maybe consolidate East Ramapo with another school district. Or at least realign some schools into East Ramapo so that the next elections will result in a non Orthodox Jewish majority which could vote to cut off the gravy train to the private yeshivas and redirect public money to public schools.

In the long run, the States need to do more, such as making this sort of thing illegal.

But this makes me all the more determined to cut off public funding to private schools in ANY form. This may be the extreme example, but it shows that you cannot let people who are disinterested in the public schools have control of those same schools. In the end, the private schools benefit and the public schools are raped.

As for the NAACP’s lawsuit. I support it, but it won’t do any good as it will not result in the Orthodox Jewish majority on the school board being broken. Only district realignment or consolidation will do that.

None of the Orthodox Jewish majority. There are two black members on the board, who if they have children, are presumably attending the public schools.

So ready the article.

They increased funding to bus students to private schools (27,000 private school students vs 11,000 in public schools).

I see nothing in there that other moneys went to the private schools.

I see in the article the school district has had to pay out nearly 10 million dollars in legal fee’s over the last few years (instead of spending it on the school system).

I see that there are complaints for years that the district is underfunded by the state

I also see that minorities (district breakdown is 60% white 22% black 15% latino) are unhappy that on a 9 member board, it appears they only have 3 seats (looks like the district breakdown to me).

and wouldn’t you know it, one of the black members of the board had to resign after theft charges.

Only change I see that should be made, is NY have private schools be responsible for their own bussing (Didn’t see if in the article, but OP mentioned other public funds going to the private schools).

And if the private schools do get state funding. Then they need to be like Utah and have a state board that oversee’s the individual schools, and helps set the funding for them.

I saw nothing in the article stating that non of the majority board members don’t have kids in the public school system.

You’re not particularly familiar with Hasidim, are you?

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It is the problem with school boards. But in this case…all of them being at large is ridiculous. It should be 1 seat per district or group of districts. Not all at large. There is no local representation in that scenario.

Well, that’s the whole issue.

Take for example New Square, one of the largest villages in the district.

The village is more than 90% Skverer Hasidim. There are no public schools in New Square. And yet, there are 10,000 hasidic votes for at-large school board seats.

Monsey, New York is another Hasidic hamlet. 3 of the school board members come from Monsey - a hamlet with one public school, and more than 45 private yeshivas.

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What is sad is that this sort of thing goes on in Israel itself. If you are Ultra Orthodox (Hasidic or such), you get stipends from the Israeli government. If your not Ultra Orthodox, you get to fend for yourself.

While that might go over in Israel, it has no business going over in the United States. It needs to stop. Pay for your own yeshivas with your own money. Bus your own kids at your own expense.

And if your kids are not in public school, then step aside and let people who have an interest in the public schools run the public schools.

Why not?

One of these places …well, in New Jersey…was in the news recently - some Jews had been attacked.

The blacks and Latinos in the neighborhood are upset that they are visited practically every day by Jews who want to buy out their homes, and are apparently very pushy about it.

Uneasy Welcome as Ultra-Orthodox Jews Extend Beyond New York - The New York Times (NYT has a paywall but if it’s your first time visiting you should be able to read the article.

I lived an hour from nyc, near Kiryas Joel and worked in Spring Valley, a town bordering on New Square and Monsey. None of this is a new problem. This has been going on for 40 years. The Hasidic vote is sought after by every politician in the area, because they are that strong of a voting block. I for one am very happy to see this lawsuit go through. Although I don’t live in the area anymore, it’s good to see something happening. I love the Hasidic people, they are amazing and very interesting. But they strength they have in the area is over the top.

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Sheer numbers. The Hasidic community is HUGE! It’s not uncommon for a single couple to have anywhere from 6 to 12 children.

In a way I disagree. If they are tax payers, they have the right to be on the board to determine how money is raised (tax increases) and spent.

Good Lord. Make them stop!

Well, as long as it’s democratic will of the majority…


United States District Judge Cathy Siebel of the Untied States District Court for the Southern District of New York, sitting at White Plains, has found in favor of the Plaintiffs.

Link to Opinion of the Court in NAACP, et al., Plaintiffs v East Ramapo Central School District, Defendant.

The Court banned the use of at large elections for the school board and mandated single member ward elections. The election set for June 9 has been postponed until the parties and the court agree on the geographical boundaries of the wards.

The Court invoked Section 2 of the Voting Rights Act, which in this situation essentially requires a change to single member districts from at large elections.

All the pertinent population and race data is in the decision.

Pretty much a foreordained decision in this case. Under the VRA, this was the only possible result. I agree with the ruling.