I call Jewish schools in NYC mafia. They kind of are. You want your child to have a JEwish education, we are not talking about the privilege of being in a private school where I understand they can be picky, here we are talking about a Jewish family who is trying to give their child a Jewish education but no, they can reject you for virtually no reason.
Well, my child didn’t really have “no reason” to be rejected. He is not an easy child and these school want/ prefer easy to handle children, as we said they can pick and choose and they choose what’s best for them.
everything started when my son, at the time 3 going to 4 was accepted in a relatively new Jewish private school on the upper east side. for some reason my gut was telling me that was not the right school for him but husband insisted so I went with it.
When I dropped him off the first day I remember crying on my way out, not sure why, maybe because I knew my 3 years old wasn’t ready for PreK yet, or maybe because the classroom was in a basement (welcome to NYC schools). Not sure, but I had a bad feeling.
Weeks went by and the Director kept on calling me telling me my child was not feeling well because he didn’t want to join in with the other kids activities, little they knew about how stubborn he is.
Months went by and somehow he picked a very bad behavior that he had never shown before. He started spitting, hitting and kicking (and throwing stuff) if the teachers tried to get too close to him if he didn’t want to do something he was supposed to.
I knew transitions were always difficult for him, but this was beyond.
The school started calling me to pick him up early almost every day, at that point, at the rate of 26K/year, my son was only participating for maybe 13K so I decided it was not worth it also considering that they were trying to label my child with all sort of weird initials.
I pulled him out around January, I called 11 other Jewish preschools in the NYC area but nobody accepted him, some because they (claimed) they were full, some because they were not comfortable with him (without even meeting him), some just because they decided the wouldn’t. Bottom line my son spent the last 6 months of school at home with me, which, to be honest I did not mind at bit although I was afraid he was missing out on important academic milestones (or not?!) – I am not built to be the homeschooling mother, I tried but that didn’t go very well.
Time came to apply for another school, we decided to try a more established Jewish school in the same area. The “interview” went well, I bribed my son into behaving like a normal human being with a lollipop at the end of the interview. He is a very sweet kid with a Dr Jackill personality.
Then I had the great idea to enroll him for camp in the same school so he could have a fun experience before starting the new year.
The first 2 weeks went great, he loved his teacher and I could tell she knew what she was doing and could keep him happy. Unfortunately this teacher was there only for 2 wek, I should have quit right there and then but I decided to continue …. As soon as I met the new teacher I knew she was not going to be able to handle my son. In fact that’s what happened, within one week I saw the pattern of the previous school coming back, refusal to participate, isolation, anger … the last drop was when he threw playdoh at the director. That was pretty much the end of camp and they kindly let us know that if that behavior continued he was not welcomed back in September.
They also suggested a neuropsychological evaluation for the amazing price of $4500- out of pocket.
This school had an even lower tolerance that the previous one. 1 strike and you are out.
We are now looking into public school options, thank you Jewish Mafia … meant schools!