Has­monean school to change ad­mis­sion rules

The Jewish Chronicle - - NEWS - BY CHAR­LOTTE OLIVER

HAS­MONEAN HIGH School has con­firmed it will com­ply with an or­der to amend its ad­mis­sions pro­ce­dure.

The Ortho­dox state school said it was “re­view­ing and up­dat­ing our ad­mis­sions poli­cies to en­sure that we abide by the cur­rent reg­u­la­tions re­gard­ing ad­mis­sions, that our school’s ethos is up­held and that we re­flect the needs of the Ortho­dox Jewish com­mu­nity.”

The move comes af­ter a com­plaint was up­held by Of­fice of the Schools Ad­ju­di­ca­tor (OSA).

The Fair Ad­mis­sions Cam­paign had ob­jected to ques­tions the school asks about prospec­tive par­ents’ lev­els of ob­ser­vance.

One of the ques­tions asks whether par­ents ob­serve “the laws of fam­ily pu­rity”. This al­ludes to a cou­ple’s ab­sten­tion from sex­ual re­la­tions for seven days af­ter a women’s pe­riod, and her use of a mikveh to pu­rify her­self.

In his re­port, the OSA ad­ju­di­ca­tor said that it was not un­rea­son­able to ask the ques­tion, but that it was im­pos­si­ble for a rabbi to “ob­jec­tively as­sess whether or not a fam­ily ob­serves the laws of fam­ily pu­rity”.

The ad­ju­di­ca­tor found that other cri­te­ria on as­sess­ing ob­ser­vance also did not meet the OSA’s re­quire­ments to be clear, ob­jec­tive and fair.

The school, in Hen­don, north-west Lon­don, has un­til Fe­bru­ary to make the amend­ments.

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