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Put Chabad Kids into Public School
The Lubavitch/Chabad news online Your Jewish News reports that Chabad Rabbi Alexander Namdar and his wife Leah have been informed by Swedish school authorities in Gothenburg that their children must attend public school or they will be fined $2400 (16,000 SEK) per week. The children currently learn in an online Jewish school framework (among other accomplishments and activities). Putting them into Swedish public school would subject them to the kind of abuse we have detailed here many times.
The Namdars are appealing the decision by Gothenburg authorities to force their children into an inappropriate and potentially dangerous situation. As the article below points out, Sweden is again pretending that anti-Semitism does not exist in Sweden. But there is no reason to put the Namdar kids in danger while Swedish authorities continue to ignore the Jew-hatred happening under their noses.
Thanks to Hadassa De Young for the heads-up.
Sweden forces religious Jewish kids into public school, or face huge fines.
On January 26, Rabbi Alexander and Leah Namdar, Chabad representatives to Sweden, were served at their home with a notice by Gothenburg’s school authorities: Four of their children presently studying at an international online school must be delivered to a Swedish school by February 1. Failure to do so may result in a fine of 16000 crown—the equivalent of $2400 per week.
The notice came following a change in Sweden’s law January 1st that tightened restrictions on homeschooling, permitting it only in “extraordinary” circumstances. Religious reasons were explicitly excluded as a valid reason.
According to Richard Backenroth, the attorney representing the Namdars in their court battle against Gothenburg’s school authorities, the case will be a critical test of Sweden’s record on religious freedom. European law protects the religious freedom of its citizens, but with this action, Sweden is effectively denying the Namdars this right.
“This is a stain on the reputation of a country that takes pride in equality as a fundamental value,” says Rabbi Namdar who, like his wife, regards education as their “highest priority.”
Backenroth, who is appealing the notice and its “exorbitant fine” which came while the Namdars’ case is still pending, told lubavitch.com that “Sweden’s schools cannot possibly accommodate the needs of the Namdar children with respect to their religious requirements.”
Moreover, the law, which challenges the right of parents to home school their children, should not be applied to the Namdar children, he insists, because they are in fact, being educated “in a normal online school along with 500 international students,” as well as through private tutoring, yet Gothenburg school authorities are choosing to ignore this.
Full article here.
By Chanah Shapira