CamdenNewJournal

The independent London newspaper

Celebrate Abacus Belsize Primary

09 August, 2019

• MANY things have been said about Abacus Belsize Primary and whether or not the school should or shouldn’t move to the former police station building on Rosslyn Hill.

It has become a topic of a emotional debate. However, I believe there is one important aspect related to the nature of the community Abacus is currently serving, that has not been sufficiently emphasised.

Abacus Belsize Primary was established in 2013 because there was a need for a secular state school in Belsize Park. If you look at the map you will see the majority of the schools in the area are private.

A family that can’t afford or chooses not to send their children to a private school is left with only two options, both of which are faith schools.

Considering the fact that Belsize Park is a home to families of diverse faiths and religions as well as atheist families, it is clear that if it wasn’t for Abacus, many would have been left without a proper educational alternative for their children.

For example, Belsize Park has a large Jewish community and many members of this community, my family included, are non-religious and in need of a secular school.

I personally know several Jewish families who have been living here in the past and moved up north because of the challenges involved in securing a place in a state funded secular school.

I can safely say that those of us who were lucky to get a place in Abacus feel at home there, because Abacus is an inclusive school that brilliantly accommodates families of different ethnicities and faiths.

It is a place where children are fortunate to learn about various cultures and traditions, a place where they can celebrate Hanukkah, Christmas, Chinese New Year and Eid.

In a world full of conflict and division this sort of educational environment should be welcomed, promoted and celebrated.

Rather than being a cause of a dispute it should be a source of pride and joy.

My family, and the many others (signatures below) who benefit from this wonderfully inclusive school, would like to ask the community to embrace us and our children in their educational pursuits by supporting Abacus and its move to Rosslyn Hill.

JENNY KANANOV SHAYO
Lyndhurst Gardens, NW3

And signatories:
OFER SHAYO, TALI TREIVISH, TOM TREIVISH, MICHAL YACOBI, ASAF YACOBI, ORANIT BERGER, DORI STEIN, ODED CASPI, GABRIELA ZUTEL, GIULIA GALLEA, DAVID CRAWFORD, CATERINA GENNAIOLI, EDOARDO BARRA, ALINA SHAWCROSS, PHILIP SHAWCROSS, HEDZER DE HAAN, JANNE DE HAAN, EZE VIDRA, ROBYN VIDRA, FARHAN, LALJI, SHIREEN LALJI, RALUCA SOCOL, MARIUS SOCOL, SONALE KARADIA, SIRIS KARADIA, CIGDEM AKKAYA, DAFNA WACHMAN COHEN, ROY COHEN, FIONA MURPHY, RICHARD SHERWOOD, MAYA ZIMERMAN, BARAK ZIMMERMAN, ANGELS OLIVA-GIRBAU, JAUME SANCHEZ-ELIAS, MARTA ROLAK DELORCA, VINCENT GARCIA, ANDEREGG, DEBBIE EDERY, BRYAN EDERY, MANDY SIMPSON, DAVID SIMPSON, KAREN LI FOSTER, LAURENCE FOSTER, TANYA VOROBEICHIK, OLEG VOROBEICHIK, HELENA HARRIS, ISMAIL BULUS , ALEXANDRA ARANGO-LARCHE, SEBASTIEN LARCHE, ATHEKA GURY, AL HADI ALI

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