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Some parents in wealthy Tel Aviv suburb oppose appointment of Arab teacher

Celebrity Nicol Raidman, whose son attends the school in Herzliya Pituah, slams the angry parents as ‘racist’

Illustrative: Preparations for the new school year at the Gamla elementary school in Katzrin, northern Israel, on August 22, 2021. (Michael Giladi/Flash90)
Illustrative: Preparations for the new school year at the Gamla elementary school in Katzrin, northern Israel, on August 22, 2021. (Michael Giladi/Flash90)

Some parents of children who attend an elementary school in Herzliya are reportedly furious that the school’s administration has selected an Arab teacher to lead a second-grade classroom.

According to Channel 12 news, a group of parents has hired a lawyer to formally oppose the appointment.

One involved parent, who chose to remain anonymous, told the network that an Arab instructor who teaches math or English would be acceptable, but an educator in the younger grades “is supposed to instill students with a love of Israel, of the homeland, the holidays, the symbols, memorial days — an Arab educator cannot provide all of that.”

The school is located in the wealthy neighborhood of Herzliya Pituah along the coast.

Nicol Raidman, a well-known media personality whose son attends the school, condemned the complaints from some parents as racist.

“A good teacher should not be judged on their years of experience, their religion, ethnicity or political views,” Raidman wrote on Instagram, “but on their ability to enter the hearts of children and leave behind a ray of light.”

Nicol Raidman (Miriam Alstre/FLASH90)

Raidman, who is a close friend of Sara Netanyahu, wrote that she considers herself strongly right-wing, but “there is no connection between political views and racism!”

She slammed the “hypocrisy” of her neighbors, “who vote for the left and fly the flag of equality and yet oppose an Arab teacher.”

Illustrative view of high-tech office buildings in Herzliya Pituah, December 12, 2015. (Nati Shohat/Flash 90)

Ziv Omer, head of the city’s parental leadership committee, defended the school’s decision, according to the Tzomet Hasharon-Herzliya news site.

“The Herzliya Parental Leadership Committee condemns discrimination of any kind, including on the basis of religion, ethnicity, gender or sexual orientation,” wrote Omer. “For many years, schools in Herzliya have included teachers from across the spectrum of Israeli society, and parents and students have embraced them. It would be better for us if our children were educated to respect pluralism, and if we left such dark opinions out of the education system!”

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