Reprehensible Landlords Pt. 3 – Worst Landlords in New York – Oy.. The Top 10!

2018 NYC Landlord Watchlist

 

1.ERIC SILVERSTEIN

Buildings on 2018 Watchlist: 4

Number of Units: 356

Number of HPD Violations: 1449
2018 Average

Number of DOB Violations: 43

Tax Lien in Past Two Years No

Number of Evictions: 2

2.JEFFERY DUNSTON

Buildings on 2018 Watchlist: 15

Number of Units:231

Number of HPD Violations: 1345
2018 Average

Number of DOB Violations:2 5

Tax Lien in Past Two Years Yes

Number of Evictions:6

3.DEBBIE VASQUEZ

Buildings on 2018 Watchlist: 9

Number of Units: 345

Number of HPD Violations: 1174
2018 Average

Number of DOB Violations: 41

Tax Lien in Past Two Years No

Number of Evictions: 2

4.BRUCE HALEY

Buildings on 2018 Watchlist: 8 

Number of Units: 170

Number of HPD Violations: 995
2018 Average

Number of DOB Violations: 17

Tax Lien in Past Two Years No

Number of Evictions: 0

5.THOMAS STEINER

Buildings on 2018 Watchlist: 3

Number of Units: 250

Number of HPD Violations: 850
2018 Average

Number of DOB Violations: 5

Tax Lien in Past Two Years No

Number of Evictions: 3

6.AVI DAVIES

Buildings on 2018 Watchlist: 5

Number of Units: 244

Number of HPD Violations: 819
2018 Average

Number of DOB Violations: 34

Tax Lien in Past Two Years No

Number of Evictions: 1

7.MICHAEL LAZAROFF

Buildings on 2018 Watchlist: 2

Number of Units: 112

Number of HPD Violations: 778
2018 Average

Number of DOB Violations: 24

Tax Lien in Past Two Years No

Number of Evictions: 4

8.ABDUL KHAN

Buildings on 2018 Watchlist: 7

Number of Units: 163

Number of HPD Violations: 679
2018 Average

Number of DOB Violations: 35

Tax Lien in Past Two Years No

Number of Evictions: 6

9.JASON KORN

Buildings on 2018 Watchlist: 5

Number of Units: 178

Number of HPD Violations: 656
2018 Average

Number of DOB Violations: 3

Tax Lien in Past Two Years No

Number of Evictions: 4

10.IRVING LANGER

Buildings on 2018 Watchlist: 10

Number of Units: 186

Number of HPD Violations: 627
2018 Average

Number of DOB Violations: 25

Tax Lien in Past Two Years No

Number of Evictions: 4

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Williamsburg, Brooklyn and a Passover Plague – Get Your Children Vaccinated or Don’t Attend Seders with Others

Signs warn of the dangers of a persistent measles outbreak in Williamsburg.

A measles outbreak is dividing families in this Orthodox Jewish community. Passover could make it worse

 

New York (CNN)As one of the holiest Jewish celebrations of the year arrives, families in the Hasidic section of Williamsburg, Brooklyn, face a dilemma.

“Say you have six kids that want to come to the Seder, with all the grandchildren,” said Eli Banash, 32, a member of the Orthodox community who works in Williamsburg.

“Grandmother wants everybody to come. One family didn’t vaccinate the kids. Five did. The five families are saying, ‘We’re not coming unless they don’t come!’ With Passover, it’s going to intensify.”

persistent measles outbreak has hit this ultra-Orthodox enclave and led city officials to declare a public health emergency.

Passover, which begins at sundown Friday and ends April 27, marks the Exodus story from the Bible and is celebrated with large gatherings and ceremonial meals. But community leaders and health officials fear the holiday may further fuel the spread of the highly contagious disease.

Already, 359 cases of measles have been confirmed in Brooklyn and Queens since October, mostly in Williamsburg. The outbreak began when, according to health officials, an unvaccinated child became infected with the illness while visiting Israel.

“The concern is that with Passover and increased travel, we’re going to be putting more people at risk,” said New York City’s health commissioner, Dr. Oxiris Barbot.

Across the country, measles cases have jumped to the second-highest level in a quarter century, with 555 cases confirmed in 20 states, according to the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

“Because of measles’ long incubation period, we know this outbreak will get worse before it gets better,” Barbot said in a statement this week.

A pamphlet directed at Orthodox communities helped fuel the fear of vaccines

In Hasidic Williamsburg, bearded men walk hurriedly in long frock coats crowned by black hats. Women in ankle-length skirts push strollers on crowded sidewalks and Hasidic boys with spiraling side curls dart through the streets in bunches.

In an insular community where some don’t take kindly to intrusion, residents blame the outbreak largely on a hardline minority opposed to vaccinations, or anti-vaxers. The close-knit neighborhood — where residents explain the insularity as a way of preserving the community’s identity — has seen heightened tension in some families, especially as Passover preparations got underway.

Blima Marcus, a nurse and past president of the Orthodox Jewish Nurses Association, has been holding small workshops with the nurses in Brooklyn and New Jersey to educate members of the ultra-Orthodox community who are fearful of vaccines.

The fears were fueled in part by a slick 40-page booklet being distributed in Orthodox enclaves about the dangers of vaccines. The booklet is directly aimed at the Orthodox community, partly written in Hebrew and filled with snippets from the Torah. Yet Marcus and Orthodox Jewish leaders say there is nothing in Jewish law that prohibits vaccinations.

To continue reading on CNN click here.

Judge Finally Sides With Health Officials in New York – Mandated Measles Vaccines

Judge Upholds Mandatory Measles Vaccinations As New York Closes More Schools

 

A Brooklyn judge on Thursday upheld a mandatory measles vaccinations order. On the same day, the United Talmudical Academy, pictured here, reopened after being closed for failing to comply with a Health Department order that required it to provide medical and attendance records amid a measles outbreak.

A Brooklyn judge has sided with New York health officials to uphold a mandatory measles vaccinations order, dismissing a lawsuit from a group of parents who claimed the city had overstepped its authority.

Judge Lawrence Knipel on Thursday refused parents’ request to lift the vaccination order that was imposed last week to stem a severe measles outbreak. “A fireman need not obtain the informed consent of the owner before extinguishing a house fire,” Knipel wrote in his ruling as quoted by Gothamist. “Vaccination is known to extinguish the fire of contagion.”

On the same day, the city announced that it was closing four more schools and issuing three civil summons for parents who had failed to comply with the mandate.

As of Thursday, the New York Department of Health had recorded 359 cases of measles since the outbreak began in October, up from 329 confirmed cases on Monday. The cases are centered in ultra-Orthodox Jewish communities in Brooklyn.

A group of five parents had sued the city over the mandated measles, mumps and rubella vaccinations, claiming that the current outbreaks do not justify “drastic emergency measures” that override individual rights. The lawsuit argued that the outbreak was not a “clear and present danger to public health.”

But the judge disagreed.

“The unvarnished truth is that these diagnoses represent the most significant spike in incidence of measles in the United States in many years and the Williamsburg section of Brooklyn is at its epicenter,” he wrote in his opinion, The Wall Street Journal reports.

Robert Krakow, the parents’ attorney, said that his clients were disappointed and that they were discussing next steps, according to The Journal. He said he was not surprised by the decision.

In Thursday’s release, the city said it had identified three children who were exposed to measles but were still unvaccinated as of last Friday. The cases will go to a hearing, where parents will pay a $1,000 penalty if the violations are upheld, according to the city. Parents who do not appear at the hearing or respond to the summons will be fined $2,000.

The city said its health authority is working with community leaders to ensure schools comply with emergency mandates.

A preschool program at United Talmudical Academy, which was closed for violating a city order that required it to provide medical and attendance records, reopened on Thursday “under Health Department monitoring,” the city announced.

To continue reading NPR click here.

Schemes, Dreams, Mayor de Blasio, Donations, Homelessness, Too Much Money in the Wrong Hands

Dear Reader:

The following article by Richard Steier from The Chief is being republished in full with permission of the author. 

LM  

 

Mayor Sidetracked By Schemes and Dreams

    Updated 

    deblas_liu

    HUCKLEBERRY FINN HE’S NOT: Mayor de Blasio may feel like he’s lighting out for the territory every time he spends a weekend on the presidential campaign trail, but his continuing to accept political contributions from those with ties to notorious developers bruises his image as a reformer and suggests he’s a machine pol in progressive garb. State Sen. John Liu, a 2013 mayoral rival, said Mr. de Blasio had sought abolition of an admissions test for specialized high schools because that was easier than improving education in black and Latino neighborhoods.

    Call me a cynic, but lately every time I hear Mayor de Blasio launch into his spiel about how there’s plenty of money in this city/country/world but “it’s just in the wrong hands,” I can’t help but think of the Podolsky brothers.

    That would be Stuart and Jay, the offspring of Zenek Podolsky. The father launched the family real-estate business with crude-but-chilling simplicity: during the mid-1980s he paid a gang to use intimidation and harassment tactics to clear out buildings under rent control and rent stabilization so he could jack up rents.

    When then-Manhattan District Attorney Robert Morgenthau announced seven indictments of unscrupulous landlords in the fall of 1984, including Stuart and Jay along with their father, he stated, “The planned alternative for tenants who refused to move called for the conspirators to bully, burglarize and menace those tenants and to ransack, burglarize and flood their residences.”

    Zenek Podolsky got off with a brief prison sentence, buying leniency by handing over three Upper West Side buildings to the Coalition for the Homeless and testifying against the former head of the Taxi and Limousine Commissioner, Jay Turoff, about a scheme involving the sale of electronic taxi meters.

    Kids Refined Methods

    Stuart and Jay Podolsky got off with virtually no jail time. Andrew Rice, who reported on the Podolsky brothers’ operations early this decade for New York Magazine, found that they stopped emptying buildings by moving drug addicts, prostitutes and strong-arm men into vacant apartments to make longtime tenants’ lives miserable in favor of operating buildings where half the units offered shelter for the homeless under city contracts.

    Ownership wasn’t in their names; they used shell companies that listed their lawyer’s name and that of Alan Lapes, who managed the properties for them. The New York Times, following up on a couple of Daily News articles, reported earlier this month that the city began contracting with the Podolsky companies for buildings for its cluster-site program for the homeless in 2001—the final year of Mayor Rudy Giuliani’s administration. Over a five-year period beginning in July 2013, the Department of Homeless Services paid those companies $189 million for use of cluster-site apartments and single-room occupancy buildings.

    Mr. Rice in late 2013—as Mayor Michael Bloomberg was wrapping up his third term in office—reported in New York magazine that the Podolsky brothers did little to correct their properties’ serious deficiencies, and took extra steps to cover their tracks by having their building managers use fake names when speaking to tenants or DHS employees.

    That would have seemed to be of interest to Bill de Blasio, who at the time the article was published was getting ready to succeed Mr. Bloomberg and had pledged to reform what he called the city’s “disastrous and broken homelessness policy.”

    His tenant-rights advocacy during his time as Public Advocate was burnished by the fact that his office annually published a list of the city’s worst landlords, adopting a tradition begun decades earlier by the late Jack Newfield as an investigative reporter for the Village Voice.

    Yet once he took office, the city continued doing business with the Podolsky brothers. Mr. Rice had been told by DHS employees that the Bloomberg administration worked with them because it needed beds and couldn’t be that choosy about the suppliers. The need grew dramatically once Mr. Bloomberg ended a policy of allowing the homeless to jump to the head of the line for Federal Section 8 housing vouchers, which Patrick Markee of the Coalition for the Homeless told New York was “literally the biggest policy mistake of the Bloomberg administration” and a major factor in the explosion of families who were homeless.

    Yet nothing really changed once Mr. de Blasio took office, other than his suddenly being the person forced to talk about the lack of progress in dealing with a “disastrous and broken homelessness policy.”

    Meet the ‘New Sheriff’

    And then on Jan. 10, during the same State of the City address in which he lamented that there was too much money in the hands of the wrong people, the Mayor signed an executive order establishing the Mayor’s Office to Protect Tenants.

    “The city’s worst landlords will have a new sheriff to fear,” he declared. “When a landlord tries to push out a tenant by making their home unlivable, a team of inspectors and law-enforcement agents will be on the ground in time to stop it. We’ll use every tool we have: we’ll fine the landlords, we’ll penalize the landlords. But if the fines and penalties don’t cut it, we will seize their buildings and we will put them in the hands of a community nonprofit that will treat tenants with the kind of respect that they deserve.”

    Ten days later, however, Michael Gartland reported in the Daily News that the city’s plan to convert 500 cluster-site apartments in Brooklyn and The Bronx into affordable housing hinged on acquiring 17 buildings “controlled by the notorious Podolsky family.”

    It stated that the Wall Street Journal had recently reported the brothers were under investigation for possible tax evasion.

    The story noted that the Mayor had returned a $4,950 political contribution from Alan Lapes—the property manager used by the Podolsky brothers—but kept more than $10,000 in contributions bundled through the late Robert Hess, who after serving as Mr. Bloomberg’s Homeless Services Commissioner had formed a non-profit, Housing Solutions USA, that was tied to the Podolsky’s.

    In response to the story, the Mayor announced that the deal was being placed on “pause.”

    Less than two months later, however, Mr. Gartland reported that the deal was nearing a conclusion. The biggest news was that the price-tag for the purchase of the 17 buildings, initially reported to be between $40 million and $60 million, had zoomed to $173 million, with the city financing the purchase and then having non-profit groups take over day-to-day management of the properties.

    $143M Wasn’t Enough

    Mr. Gartland quoted an anonymous city official who attributed the jump in sale price to the Law Department’s seeking an appraisal from Metropolitan Valuation Services of the value of the 17 buildings, which came in at $143.1 million.

    That jump in valuation wasn’t enough for the Podolsky brothers: they demanded $200 million. Rather than bring in another appraiser, as they were entitled to do to give them added leverage, city officials decided to virtually split the difference between the appraisal and the brothers’ demands. The deal has since been completed.

    The city could have sought to seize the properties under eminent domain, but Social Services Commissioner Steven Banks, who distinguished himself as a lawyer for the homeless before joining city government, noted that could produce a lengthy court fight that would tie up the properties at a time when DHS sorely needed the additional beds.

    Then The Times reported April 4 that the lawyer for the landlords in the discussions on the deal was Frank Carone, who also serves as counsel to the Brooklyn Democratic Party. Willie Neuman’s story stated that Mr. Carone and his wife had each made the maximum individual donation of $4,950 to Mr. de Blasio’s re-election campaign two years ago, and that the attorney had donated the maximum $5,000 to the Mayor’s Federal political-action committee, Fairness PAC, and helped solicit additional donors for the fund, which has covered the Mayor’s expenses in recent months for his travels to early-primary states as he considers a run for President.

    Both the Mayor and Mr. Carone denied having discussed the Podolsky brothers deal. Mr. Carone told The Times in a statement that “I am proud to say I regularly support people from Brooklyn. So it should be of no astonishment why I am supporting our Brooklyn Mayor as he explores a run for President.”

    Future Considerations?

    No doubt if asked, the two men would deny they have had any conversations about a possible future run for office by the Mayor’s wife, Chirlane.

    Then Mr. Gartland reported April 10 that Human Resources Administration Chief Contracting Officer Vincent Pullo a year ago demanded that a homeless-service provider in The Bronx sign an affidavit swearing that the nonprofit had no connection to the Podolsky brothers. Mr. Rice reported in New York more than five years ago that Housing Solutions had taken over contracts belonging to the nonprofit, Aguila Inc., and its CEO, Jenny Rivera, told The News April 8 that she was providing services to homeless families at Podolsky brothers properties and that the city knew this.

    She said she was forced to sign the notarized affidavit when the city jeopardized her ability to pay her workers by withholding a requested loan. She sent a letter to the Mayor late last month stating, “Under duress, I was coerced into signing this affidavit even though the city knows full well that Aguila manages multiple buildings owned by the Podolsky’s.”

    She received an April 8 response from Homeless Services Administrator Joslyn Carter calling the affidavits “standard representations of the relationship between the entities.”

    But Ms. Rivera showed Mr. Gartland correspondence she had last year with Mr. Pullo in which she sent him a signed lease for the Podolsky buildings and he responded with an e-mail requesting an affidavit asserting that Aguila “has no affiliation with” the Podolsky Family (any and all members)” or Mr. Lapes, their property manager.

    It seemed clear that the de Blasio administration was moving forward on the deal and wanted to have a document indicating that it was not doing business with the Podolsky brothers. There have been no reports of them having made political contributions to the Mayor or his PAC, but they have long been known for making business transactions in the maiden names of their wives.

    The level of desperation felt by the administration to secure properties that could be used for affordable housing could be seen in a New York Post report last Thursday that noted the Podolsky buildings had hundreds of unresolved Housing Code violations of the sort associated with the most troubled Housing Authority developments, from vermin to peeling lead paint to broken locks. Among just four of those buildings—three in The Bronx, one in Brooklyn—there were 188 open violations cited by the Department of Housing Preservation and Development, with 30 of those classified as “immediately hazardous.”

    The ‘Not the First’ Excuse

    It’s true that the city’s extensive dealings with the Podolsky brothers, despite what Mr. Morgenthau 35 years ago described as a kind of terror campaign against their tenants, dated back two Mayors.

    But a key component of Mr. de Blasio’s rationale for his first mayoral run in 2013 was that he would be more sensitive to the needs of the less-fortunate in the city, and less-solicitous of the wealthy, than both Mr. Giuliani and Mr. Bloomberg.

    That has been true for his most-prominent campaign issue, improper stop-and-frisks by police, although sharp scaling-back of abuses began during Mr. Bloomberg’s final two years in office even before a Federal Judge ruled that the NYPD had been conducting the program in a way that violated the U.S. Constitution.

    But the lead-paint contamination suffered by hundreds of children in Housing Authority apartments because of a four-year-plus stretch in which no inspections were conducted was treated by the Mayor as less a public-health concern than a political problem. He noted the Bloomberg administration didn’t do inspections in its final two years, and he kept HA Chair Shola Olatoye in her job even after it was revealed that she had lied to the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development in 2016 about inspections having been done. Even a subsequent lie before the City Council late in 2017 about the training given to the employees who eventually did the inspections did not prompt him to jettison her immediately; she hung on for two months after that misrepresentation came to light.

    Six months later, she became vice president of business development for Suffolk Construction, a Boston-based contractor seeking to expand operations in New York.

    It was an impressive landing for someone who had been tarnished both by the deteriorating conditions in some HA developments and her lies about efforts to correct them. Some of the mystery about her rebounding so well was dissipated when it was announced that a Boston fund-raiser for Mr. de Blasio’s PAC April 5 was being hosted by her boss, Suffolk CEO John Fish. Notwithstanding his claims that he’s a reformer, Mr. de Blasio has demonstrated more than a few times that the expressway to his good graces is paved with political contributions.

    Dubious Schools Crusade

     

    Continue reading

    Anti-Semitism is on the Rise – The Measles Has a Vaccine, Anti-Semitism Doesn’t?

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n9Xn6WCj0K8
    Updated 4.19.19

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    The Measles, Uniquely Jewish, anti-Vaxxers, Anti-Semitism and the Moral of the Story….

    There are reasons for not getting vaccinated, legitimate reasons. Children with compromised immune systems often cannot be vaccinated. People with specific allergies sometimes cannot be vaccinated. And there are religions wherein it is forbidden to vaccinate. That last one raises questions, but it might be possible to understand. And we have been told that people who practice those religions limit access to their children and to others, a virtual self-quarantine. 

    Judaism is not one of the religions that forbids vaccinations. In fact, it is arguable that Pikuah Nefesh – the notion that saving human life trumps all else – demands that Jews vaccinate our children. Yet, here we are known world over as a community that has helped spread, if not fostered and advocated for the spread of, an all but extinct virus, the measles. Historically Jews have been blamed for plagues. Never before, however, has the causal correlation between religious insularity and the effect of spreading an all but extinct disease been quite so clear.

    Organizations like the anti-Defamation League (ADL), the American Israel Political Action Committee (AIPAC), the Simon Wiesenthal Center and others wonder why there is a rise in anti-Semitism. We do not wonder. When ultra-Orthodox rabbis are out advocating for the right to spread disease, there is little question. It is reprehensible that the revered leaders of  the ultra-Orthodox community could be telling parents that vaccinations are dangerous (barring unique circumstances) and moreover that it is okay to spread disease. Yet many outspoken ultra-Orthodox Rabbis are advocating anti-vaxxing. And, as such Jews are the public face of a renewal of an all-but-extinct virus’s spread. 

    Even as Jews it is difficult not to feel resentment for a community that is now defining by implication, even the principles of moderate Judaism, through the very public spread of a virus. Is it not the season of the Ten Plagues? Is that the association we want? To be the cause? 

    With a full generation of people who have been vaccinated, there is little known about what is in store for the children (and adults) who are currently getting sick. Survivors of the German measles (Rubella), who got sick before the vaccine was mainstream, many of whom are now in their late fifties to early seventies, are finding significantly earlier onset age-associated vision loss. There appears to be a causal effect between the two. Many survivors of the second wave of polio, again before the vaccine was used worldwide, suffered second polio syndrome. 

    Because the measles was all but wiped out of existence in the United States in 2000, we do not know for certain what follow-up syndromes will befall the children who are now getting sick. We do not know what is the chance for the virus to mutate. We do not know if the strains of the disease that are spreading are the same as those for which there is a vaccine or if there are groups of vaccinated individuals whose vaccines are not effective, either because they had only one dose or because the vaccine in circulation at the time is not working against this virus. We are in a world of unknowns, one associated with being an observant Jew, with being Jewish, one that has mutated. And if perspective is everything, it’s hard to wonder why now is not a great time to be Jewish.

    And, with a far more crowded world, a far more transportable world, a far more visible world than the one in 2000, the risks are so much higher for the measles to become something it isn’t. That is from both a scientific and philosophical perspective. An observant Jew who steps foot in a restaurant that is not kosher is supposed to take off his Kippa lest he be seen in an unkosher establishment. Yet he proudly wears his kippa when he tells his followers to avoid vaccinating their children? Clearly perspective was understood by the sages. Do those with a true and deeply held sense of love for Judaism really want to be the public face of the spread of the measles?

    And what of the financial costs? So much of the ultra-Orthodox pro-measles advocating community is on Medicare, Medicaid and other forms of public assistance. The costs associated with vaccinating are small. Those associated with treating disease are much higher? Who is to be held accountable? And is that not yet another reason for an increase in hatred against Jews? 

    It might be time for the wisest sages within the ultra-Orthodox community to start looking “Two Tzaddim Kadima” (two steps ahead) and consider where this is going to lead. Getting vaccinated is no longer just about the measles. It is about whether or not the greater Jewish community is going to be viewed as a plague upon the world. The measles as an illness is sadly an allegory. Let the Tzadikim among you direct your children to vaccinate, to think about your individual community and the greater good for all Jews, lest we all Jews as a collective, be viewed as a plague.

    Let those with true chesed understand, that the religious garb as a symbol of the spread of  the Measles will become the moral of the story for why the world cannot rid itself of anti-Semitism. The measles has a vaccine. Anti-Semitism does not.  

    The Measles – Numbers Continue to Rise, Error in Article as Rockland County, NY’s Judge Thorson Overruled the Anti-Vax Law…

    A sign posted at The Vancouver Clinic in Vancouver, Wash., warns patients and visitors of a measles outbreak in January.

    Booming measles cases rocket toward record: Up nearly 100 from last week

    The number of measles cases recorded across the USA rose by almost 100 last week as the annual total continued its march toward record levels, federal health officials reported Monday.

    The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said 465 cases have been confirmed in 19 states in 2019, the second-highest total since measles was declared eliminated in the USA almost two decades ago.

    The numbers are up sharply from just a week ago, when the total number of cases stood at 387 in 15 states. There were 372 cases last year; the highest total since 2000 was 667 in 2014.

    The surge has been fueled in part by the anti-vaccination movement – most people who contract measles have not been vaccinated, the CDC said. If one person has the disease, up to 90% of the people close to that person can become infected, the CDC warned.

    The Professor Adina Schick Affidavit and Yeshiva Education – Misleading Interpretation – Part I

    901354_19_PARENTS_FOR_EDUCATIONA_v_PARENTS_FOR_EDUCATIONA_AFFIDAVIT_OR_AFFIRM_76_Page_1

    Misleading and Uninformed – Further Keeping Children Hostage – The Affidavit of Professor Adina Schick and What it Fails to Understand

    We are posting the following letter and the Professor Adina Schick affidavit. Professor Shick is worthy or praise in her own right for the work she has done and all that she has accomplished. This is not intended to be a personal attack and should not be viewed as such. We have not researched Professor Schick’s upbringing, her background or anything else about her to see if she was a Yeshiva student, or if she is affiliated with an ultra-Orthodox community. 

    As a general matter, her affidavit raises Common Core standards which in our view is problematic to begin with because there are few public schools in the State of New York that are keen on continuing the Common Core standards. Common Core was a faulty premise to begin with and a number of states have already done away with them. 

    Her affidavit appears to disregard the fact that if students are given public funding for education they should be required to meet public requirements. It was clearly not an affidavit intended for that purpose. It was intended to ask a limited question: “Can children taught in Yeshiva be meeting the same standards as public school children?” Her response, in our view, is wholly misleading. 

    Professor Schick fails to mention that the Talmud is written in Aramaic. Much of the studying in Yiddish (not English) may be a linguistic accomplishment for the children learning to understand these two languages but does nothing for children who need to function in country where English is the language of daily living. The children are not taught to understand science, mathematics, physics or anything about their physical realm except through the Aramaic words in the Talmud and while one might be able to extend some sort of imaginary parallel between the two, the focus within the Yeshiva context does not draw that parallel. 

    We receive the following from a concerned reader and thought we should post: 

    Dear Lost Messiah:

    “This affidavit is extremely problematic and misleading. The fact remains, the Talmud is written in Aramaic. The language of instruction in the 39 chasidic yeshivas affected by the new guidelines is in yiddish. There is simply no way the Next Generation English Language Standards can be met through the study of Talmud in yiddish.”

     

    Page 6:

    14. In the middle school years, for example, Next Generation English Language Standards such as Literacy and Informational Text Reading Standards (e.g., Key Ideas and Details; Craft and Structure; Integration of Knowledge and Ideas); Speaking and Listening Standards (e.g., Comprehension and Collaboration; Presentation of Knowledge and Ideas); Language Standards (e.g., Vocabulary Acquisition and Use), as well as Reading Standards for Literacy in History/Social Studies and Reading Standards for Literacy in Science and Technical Subjects can be met. 

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