The plight of ‚pirate‘ preschools

21.03.2011                      15.Adar ll, 5771


The plight of 'pirate' preschools

The establishment of private day-care facilities for young children is not legal in this country, despite a crying need for them. Anyone caught running such a place can be fined, or even jailed.

Did you sign up your kid for a privately operated nursery school or kindergarten? Then you're abetting a crime. Are you looking for a play group (pe'uton ) to care for your 2-year old while you're at work? You should know that the State of Israel doesn't recognize such groups as being legal institutions. Are your children registered at any sort of preschool operating inside a residential building? You may well get a call one day that the authorities have shut it down and you have to come pick up your little one pronto.
"When you open a preschool you're in violation of the law from day one," says Anat Biran on the Education Resources Forum, which was organized by Tel Aviv Deputy Mayor Meital Lehavi. That is because, with some exceptions, the Planning and Building Law and the country's master plans do not allow space to be used for such facilities in residential buildings. Not a single square meter of the millions of square meters of housing built in Israel is designated for day care – with the exception of the centers run by the WIZO and Na'amat women's organizations….