Herzlia alumni slam punishment of pupils for 'peaceful' Israeli anthem protest

A group of Herzlia school alumni has written a two-page letter condemning the school's decision to discipline two pupils for their pro-Palestine demonstration.

Two grade nine learners 'took a knee' in protest during the singing of the Israeli national anthem at the Herzlia Middle School prize giving in Oranjezicht last week.

The Jewish community school said in a letter to parents that appropriate disciplinary action would be taken.

Herzlia alumni say they condemn the punishment of students who protested.

"We, as alumni of Herzlia, condemn in the strongest terms the school’s recent decision to discipline and publicly call to order students for peacefully protesting against Israeli political policy."

This is the opening paragraph of the letter, titled “Herzlia Alumni Support Freedom of Thought and Peaceful Expression of Dissent”.

Herzlia alumn Josh Davis says there are 100 confirmed signatures on the letter and says there is a broader sentiment that the teaching of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict is one-sided.

Davis says that an open conversation would have been more appropriate than punishment for the peaceful protest.

We feel this a broadly held sentiment.

Josh Davis, member of the Herzlia Alumni group

We feel this is a peaceful and un-obstructive form of protest.

Josh Davis, member of the Herzlia Alumni group

We feel it's wholly inappropriate, in a country that prizes freedom of expression and thought, to punish kids like this.

Josh Davis, member of the Herzlia Alumni group

Herzlia's director of education Geoff Cohen declined the opportunity to comment or respond on air.

Listen to the discussion on The John Maytham Show:


This article first appeared on CapeTalk : Herzlia alumni slam punishment of pupils for 'peaceful' Israeli anthem protest


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