A few noteworthy points:
1) The article begins by talking about Yitzi Flynn, and claiming that he "transferred his 10-year-old son from the Rosenbaum Yeshiva of North Jersey to Teaneck’s Thomas Jefferson Middle School this fall." However, much much later on we find out that that shift had nothing to do with finances and everything to do with the educational needs of his child. Seems like a bit of a bait-and-switch to me.
2) In commenting on communal efforts to stem the crisis, the article first quotes "Mira" as saying "People are not planning properly; most are in denial. And the communal leadership across the board, no one is getting up and saying ‘This is not sustainable.'" While the next paragraph mentions groups such as the OU, YU, and JEFG that are all working on solving this very problem, and in fact are saying "this is not sustainable", the article only mentions what they have done and are working on towards the end, and follows the initial mention by saying that many parents see their efforts as "too little, too late." I ask - would it be better if they did nothing at all? As this is an article, and not an opinion piece, shouldn't Julie Weiner (the writer) have done her homework into the work of these organizations in this regard?
3) In discussing the after school Talmud Torah option, the article claims "While some question how much Judaic material an after-school program can cover, pointing to the failure of Talmud Torah programs in generations past, the Rosens are hopeful." I ask - "some" question? There have been actual studies done about the effectiveness of Talmud Torah programs, and they are not pretty. Ask the Conservative and Reform movements how successful Hebrew school has been for them! Granted, we are now dealing with a more observant and perhaps committed parent body, but there are nevertheless many issues with Talmud Torah programs that will still exist. Should Weiner have at least made mention of them? Or is her goal to note that this is just a matter of opinion and thus anyone could wind up being correct?
4) Weiner then notes that Yeshiva education is no guarantee of a child's ultimate religiosity, allowing a quote from one family that they have family members who went to Yeshiva and are apparently not so religious. While anecdotal evidence certainly exists in all directions, again there have been studies done that have found that a Yeshiva education is one of the most important factors that contribute to lifelong religious observance and involvement. But, again, Weiner makes no mention of this. Her agenda is clearly not to promote Yeshiva Day Schools.
5) I have no idea what to do with this quote: "Vidaver noted that day school is itself a relatively new phenomenon, “a movement of the past two generations.” - Some people would call that progress. Two generations ago, Julie Weiner, as a woman, might not have been given her current job - should we roll that back as well since it is only two generations old?
So here is my question - what is the role of a Jewish newspaper? I am sure that they would defend themselves with some high-minded statement about simply reporting the facts or speaking for all segments of the community or something like that. I think that is rubbish. We all know that even news articles can serve effectively as opinion pieces, and this article (written by someone who is not Orthodox) seems to do exactly that. I would hope that a Jewish newspaper would cover a sensitive issue such as this with the appropriate amount of sensitivity to both sides of the issue, not by promoting the side of the issue that they perhaps support (which is interesting to me, as the editor of the paper is Orthodox and sent his own children to Orthodox schools) while giving short shrift, if that much, to the other side. Day schools and community organizations need everyone's help if they are going to figure out solutions to this problem - the Jewish Week is helping stir up antagonism to that cause.