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Brooklyn, NY - Exclusive: Just One Week Into Trial, Lev Bais Yaakov Settles With Former Student For Undisclosed Amount

Published on: March 25, 2019 01:50 PM
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Brooklyn, NY - A lawsuit charging a Brooklyn girls’ school with defamation for expelling a student after an anonymous caller said that she had texted a nude selfie to a boy without any further investigation has been quietly settled for an undisclosed amount.

The case went to trial in Brooklyn Supreme Court on March 7th and was settled one week later, with the court sealing all records relating to the trial.

Representing the former student, attorney Robert Tolchin said that he could not comment on the case because all of the records had been sealed.  Lev Bais Yaakov executive director Rabbi Shmiel Deutsch, named as a defendant in the lawsuit along with the school’s two principals, also declined to comment on the outcome of the trial, telling VIN News “It’s a closed case. No information is available.”

According to the original lawsuit filed in 2015, two years after the incident occurred, the then-tenth grader had learning disabilities and had been removed from the school after the anonymous phone call was received without any confirmation of the caller’s identity or the picture’s existence. The lawsuit also claimed that a letter sent home to classmate’s parents saying that the student had been removed for a serious infraction that tarnished her reputation, further harming the teenager.

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As previously reported on VIN News (http://bit.ly/2TyH3nU) an attempt by defendants to have the case dismissed failed, with Judge Dawn Jimenez-Salta dropping only one of four charges leveled against them.

Tolchin noted at the time that the judge’s decision opened the door for potentially substantial financial damages that could be awarded if the court decided that Lev Bais Yaakov had failed to accommodate the teen’s disability under city and state nondiscrimination laws.

No specific monetary award was sought in the case, which asked for both compensatory and punitive damages as deemed appropriate by a jury.



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Read Comments (15)  —  Post Yours »

1

 Mar 25, 2019 at 02:04 PM Anonymous Says:

Yeshivas and B'nos beware. Do your due diligence before you are choshed beksherim and expel students before investigating and due process.

2

 Mar 25, 2019 at 02:19 PM Anonymous Says:

No idea about the facts in the case, nor about what allowed this case to be tried in a secular court. I assume it was with appropriate heter. I do welcome the issue of holding a school accountable for expulsions. There are times when a student needs to be told to leave a school. It is unfortunate that these decisions are often made in haste, often with emotional forces more in charge than those that would consider the welfare of the student. Any specific case could involve more complexity than could be subjected to generalization. But the impunity that assumes that these decisions are always fair is problematic. I am glad the case is settled, and likewise that information about the specifics is unavailable. But yeshivos and girls schools are on notice that these decisions are with consequence, and they must be weighed carefully. Knee jerk reactions are seldom rational.

3

 Mar 25, 2019 at 02:23 PM JackC Says:

Hooray!

4

 Mar 25, 2019 at 02:26 PM chachom Says:

I once heard from a Godol that expelling a student was dinei nefashos.

5

 Mar 25, 2019 at 02:52 PM grandpajoe Says:

Typical of the very Hareidi Yeshivos - shoot fro the hip, and not from the brain. It is a sad commentary on the Haredi world that with all the evil that is around us - we are our worts enemies - how much abuse goes on within the ocmmuities, in schools - and what do we do sweep it under the rug, poo poo it and do NOTHING.
The specifics need not be know that's not important - what is important is that the Yeshivos and Rabbanim begin to address issues fairly and judiciously.
Remember why was the second Bait Hamikdosh destroyed , and we are not yet able to build a third - SINAS CHINUM .

6

 Mar 25, 2019 at 03:23 PM Aron1 Says:

Reply to #5  
grandpajoe Says:

Typical of the very Hareidi Yeshivos - shoot fro the hip, and not from the brain. It is a sad commentary on the Haredi world that with all the evil that is around us - we are our worts enemies - how much abuse goes on within the ocmmuities, in schools - and what do we do sweep it under the rug, poo poo it and do NOTHING.
The specifics need not be know that's not important - what is important is that the Yeshivos and Rabbanim begin to address issues fairly and judiciously.
Remember why was the second Bait Hamikdosh destroyed , and we are not yet able to build a third - SINAS CHINUM .

This unfortunate incident was ONE school. How does that become "typical" of Haredi schools? Or maybe it's only typical of your obvious anti-Haredi bias?

7

 Mar 25, 2019 at 04:05 PM Anonymous Says:

Reply to #4  
chachom Says:

I once heard from a Godol that expelling a student was dinei nefashos.

Lev beis yakov takes the weaker students to begin with. If they expelled her i beat you it was for a good cause. they don't expel easily.

8

 Mar 25, 2019 at 04:59 PM alterknaker Says:

I do feel sorry for this young girl / family,
Though I wouldn't want my children to be in such surroundings, if a youngster can post a selfie of oneself un TZNIUS'DIG he/she should be expelled from school,

9

 Mar 25, 2019 at 07:05 PM Anonymous Says:

I really feel for these parents. This frum shaming has to stop and we must be honest with ourselves. Do the schools want to educate our youngesters into becoming authentic Jews or just bots where some hide their true identities and live double lives. The Sinas chinum in the frum community is disgusting!

10

 Mar 25, 2019 at 08:56 PM Anonymous Says:

Yeshivas and schools should have a right to expel, as they have a responsibility for the rest of the student body
However 2 things should happen first -
1 - the school should have to bring it to a Beis Din of unconnected rabbinic and the should have the look into if it accurate and reaches the level of expelling.
2 - The school the beis din and parents have to make sure the student has another school to go to, even if it is a school for weaker children.
We can't jus throw out willy nilly and must have an alternative to the streets.

11

 Mar 25, 2019 at 09:36 PM PaulinSaudi Says:

A child that is having behavioral issues ought to be in school to get help. Of course, we do not even know if this young lady did anything wrong at all.

12

 Mar 25, 2019 at 10:38 PM Anonymous Says:

Reply to #8  
alterknaker Says:

I do feel sorry for this young girl / family,
Though I wouldn't want my children to be in such surroundings, if a youngster can post a selfie of oneself un TZNIUS'DIG he/she should be expelled from school,

AK:

The problem here is that the behavior never happened. No one ever saw it or verified its existence. An anonymous caller reported it, so they cannot be interrogated.

Next, the behavior is truly disgusting. I am as repulsed by it as you are. But this doesn't make the kid bad. It tells us that she has a problem. It can be dealt with, with therapy with a professional, and the kind of teachers that schools should have anyway. So expelling the kid is not always the answer.

#4:

The Gadol was the Chazon Ish. This is well known, quoted widely, and is published in one of the well known biographies of him. Finding a school or yeshiva that treats expulsion (that is sometimes warranted) with careful deliberation, care to refer to another school, and assistance and support to get needed treatment is indeed a precious find. It should be universal, but is the exception.

13

 Mar 25, 2019 at 11:10 PM devash62 Says:

For those that say "good for the school" that they expelled this young lady, was there evidence of this photo? So basically, anyone can call about someone to a school without any proof or verification, and it is a done deal? What are you a bunch of rabis ridden mad people? Have we not learned enough what false accusations can do not only to Yidden but to anyone that wants to destroy a person? The parent that is so happy the girl was expelled...How dare you! Who are you to judge, in the first place, and how dare destroy someone's life...LOSHON HORA! We are in the footsteps of Mosiach, and you throw your own people in the fire??? Look what is going on in the world......Israel's sinas chinam a shanda, a complete disrespect for Hashem and his Torah. What we are seeing today, a throwback to pre Nazi Germany, has all to do with loose mouths that run to point fingers when there is no proof...Shame on you shame on us all. Mosiach please come and finally rid this evil among our people.

14

 Mar 25, 2019 at 11:21 PM Anonymous Says:

Reply to #8  
alterknaker Says:

I do feel sorry for this young girl / family,
Though I wouldn't want my children to be in such surroundings, if a youngster can post a selfie of oneself un TZNIUS'DIG he/she should be expelled from school,

Read the article. All anyone has is a report that such a picture was posted.

15

 Mar 25, 2019 at 11:22 PM Anonymous Says:

Reply to #8  
alterknaker Says:

I do feel sorry for this young girl / family,
Though I wouldn't want my children to be in such surroundings, if a youngster can post a selfie of oneself un TZNIUS'DIG he/she should be expelled from school,

A verbal statement from another parent. Talk about Loshan Hora. It is not even clear that the parent saw the reputed photo.

16

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