April 14, 2024
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April 14, 2024
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SAR High School in Riverdale is now allowing girls to wear tefillin to davening each morning. Two girls wore tefillin every day, but were not permitted to do so in school until Principal Rabbi Tully Harcsztark decided to allow it.

“I believe that it is halachically permissible although it is a communally complicated issue,” he wrote in an email to his staff.

The two students, Ronit Morris (’15) and Yael Marans (’16) will now be wearing tefillin every day.

“[This mitzvah] has been very important to me for a very long time and I’m really glad to be doing it at SAR,” Morris told the SAR Buzz. “I started putting on tefillin after my Bat Mitzvah. I lay tefillin for three years straight at [Solomon] Schechter every morning, and then I came to SAR and it did not seem like that was a thing that the school was going to go for at the time, and we put it off for a while.”

Marans mother wears tefillin every day, so she began doing so daily just before her bat mitzvah too.

“It made me think a lot about individuality, and eventually, when I wasn’t so overwhelmed by this new ritual, I realized it was making me think about God. I’m not going to say that every time I lay tefillin I feel a renewed awe of God, but sometimes it really makes me think. It’s just something in my day that makes me really conscious and concentrated.”

As of Jan. 21, Ramaz is following SAR’s lead on this issue.

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