OU Calls on de Blaiso for Orthodox Jewish Inclusion in UPK Program

05 Feb 2015

After nearly a year of advocacy, working to ensure that New York City Jewish day schools would be included in Mayor Bill de Blasio’s signature universal pre-kindergarten (UPK) program, OU Advocacy-Teach NYS has launched a campaign in New York City calling on the mayor to “Make Universal Pre-K Universal.”

The campaign is targeted to raise awareness among New York City’s Jewish community and the greater public that Mayor de Blasio’s pledge to offer every child in New York City “truly universal, full-day pre-K” has left New York City’s Jewish day school students out in the cold.

OU Advocacy-Teach NYS has attempted to work with Mayor de Blasio since the inception of his expanded UPK program in January 2014. Despite the $300 million Mayor de Blasio received from the state for the expansion of New York City’s UPK program and repeated promises from the mayor that the program would accommodate all of the city’s four-year-olds, 89 percent of the Jewish community’s pre-K age children are still unable to participate in UPK.

This is due to the difficulty Jewish day schools encounter in order to adequately accommodate the 6 hours and 20 minutes of uninterrupted secular instruction required by the mayor’s rules, while still maintaining appropriate levels of privately-funded religious instruction.

Continue reading at The Jewish Voice

The words of this author reflect his/her own opinions and do not necessarily represent the official position of the Orthodox Union.