Escalation of violence in the south amid continued rocket fire has created chaos in local communities. Some council heads have decided to suspend school classes whereas others stick to Home Front Command guidelines and carry on with daily routine.
Various municipal officials complained the government and army are offering no support in the face of the missile threat.
Beersheba Mayor Rubik Danilovich is slated to meet Ashkelon and Ashdod mayors later on Thursday to decide on future steps following the rocket fire. Meanwhile, the Home Front Command is holding meetings to decide whether to change guidelines and instruct local authorities to suspend classes.
Grad in Beersheba (Photo: Herzl Yosef)
"The government, army and security establishment are keeping silent while we deal with alarms. No one is handing out information or instructions," Gan Yavne Council head Dror Aharon complained.
"A vacuum has been created between council heads and the security system in stark contrast to the situation during Operation Cast Lead, when we were briefed every few hours."
Aharon has decided to suspend school in Gan Yavne. "I have unfortified kindergartens," he noted. "Forty percent of Israel's citizens are under a missile attack and the prime minister has the time to travel abroad. Where is his national responsibility? I am really furious. Residents of the south cannot continue to be Hamas's hostages."
Grad rocket in Ashdod. 'Where is national responsibility?' (Photo: Polina Pearlman)
Classes will be suspended in Beersheba, Ashdod, Kiryat Gat and the Be'er Tuvia Regional Council.
Beersheba Mayor Danolovich explained that the main concern is for the children's safety while they are making their way to school, either by bus or by foot.
Unlike his counterparts, Kiryat Malakhi Mayor Motti Malka has decided not to suspend classes. "All of our educational establishments are fortified. The students have undergone countless drills. Better they be inside educational establishments than home alone or on the street."
The Home Front Command said the instruction is to continue with daily routine as the schools and kindergartens are all fortified.
Meanwhile, private kindergarten teachers in Beersheba, Ashdod and the Gaza vicinity communities claim the State has effectively abandoned them as school guidelines do not apply to them. Currently there is no clear guideline for the operation of private kindergartens.
Kindergarten association head Hanan Dagan said nursery schools cannot protect the children. "The responsibility and risk we take in opening the kindergartens is tremendous," he noted.
"I believe it is time for the State of Israel to take responsibility for the wellbeing for hundreds of children under the age of three who are in private kindergartens and issue guidelines to protect them and not financial interests pertaining to compensation fees in case of closings."
Tova Dadon, Ilana Curiel, Tomer Velmer and Yoav Zitun contributed to this report
- Follow Ynetnews on Facebook