Paterson, a transitional city that always seems to be in a transition: one group of immigrant arrive and another leave, and the cycle continues in perpetuity, but sometimes traditions and laws of former communities linger; that is exactly the case with observance of Jewish holidays in the city’s school district.
Once a large number of the Tribe lived in Silk City, today that number is nearly non-existent, at that former time the schools in the area had to accommodate that community by observing Jewish holidays. Today, those observances still linger so many years after the Jewish exodus away from Paterson.
The school district, in an effort to face up to reality, wanted to cease observing Jewish holidays. Although the student body is no longer very Jewish, a good number of teachers remain so. And it was at that point, the Board of Education hit a brick wall; the teachers union stepped in to defend some of its teachers; and some teachers lodged complaints with the superintendent; all of which paid off.
After sometime, today it was announced, that schools in the city will observe Yom Kippur but not Rosh Hashanah. Public Schools will be closed on September 26, 2012 for Yom Kippur.