The tragedy of Malky Klein's untimely death must become a learning experience for the entire Torah community. In the following article, her father tells us how this must be so:
Most significantly, Judge Ruchie Freier also expressed, in a most powerful way, similar sentiments regarding our present educational systems. Please see:
I am in total agreement with their thoughts and, from what I have heard from teachers and parents in our Torah school systems, what is being expressed in these two articles is indeed true and must be addressed. We have to care for and serve the needs of all students.
I just want to add that there is also another type of student whose needs, many times, are also not addressed and that is the inquisitive, challenging, often highly intelligent one whose questions and probing insights are not met with appropriate responses. Teachers and others, rather than recognizing their own inabilities in responding to such students, use their status and authority to browbeat such students into temporarily accepting weak answers and/or accept their legitimate and deep questions as foolish. The result is also students who lack confidence in their own being -- until they meet someone who will restore this confidence -- with that result also often being that this student is thereby drawn "off the Derech" for this person who responded to the question properly was outside the pale of Orthodoxy. OTD sadly is also not the only result of such poor education within our systems.
The call in our school systems must be to accept all students as they are and to meet the challenge of teaching all students no matter how variant they are. Chanoch L’Naar Al Pi Darko (Mishlei 22:6) is actually a demanding task -- and it is time for the Torah community to recognize it and truly implement it.
Rabbi Ben Hecht