Why Would Yeshivas Reject Pre-K Program Designed for Them?

by Josh Nathan-Kazis

June 20, 2014

Orthodox yeshivas are poised to opt out of the largest free universal prekindergarten program in the country, one that New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio says he created with them in mind.

Despite months of talks between New York City officials and Orthodox leaders, activists say that they now don’t expect many yeshivas to participate in the program. That would be a blow to de Blasio, whose administration is seeking to find 50,000 full-day pre-K seats in public and nonpublic schools by the start of the school year.

In a speech at the ultra-Orthodox umbrella group Agudath Israel of America’s annual dinner May 27, de Blasio said he had designed the full-day pre-K program in part so the yeshivas could opt in, and that he was happy with levels of Orthodox participation so far.

To read the rest of this article in The Jewish Daily Forward, click here.