Knesset Unveils New 'Academy' to Train MKs' Staff

June 1, 2015

Source: Israel Hayom


More than 100 young Israelis convened in the Knesset's spacious auditorium two weeks ago. They came to hear a lecture on the legislative process, and appeared to be very keen on hearing what the lecturer had to say, taking extensive notes. This was the first day of "classes" in what has been dubbed the "Knesset Academy for Parliamentary Aides." The new institution is the brainchild of Speaker Yuli Edelstein, who has also renamed the job. From now on parliamentary aides are to be called "parliamentary advisers."


Before this initiative, parliamentary advisers by MKs were hired even without the necessary training. More experienced aides would provide them with on-the-job training. It would take several months before they could properly handle the Knesset's technological resources, fully grasp the legislative process, deal with the archives, or know how to engage the Knesset Research and Information Center. It would also take a while before they could take charge fully of the MKs' tasks. Sponsoring bills, presenting queries at the plenum, initiating debates, and fielding questions from the media -- all these had to wait.


The participants are to be acquainted with the Knesset's technological apparatus, its Internet portal, its research center, its library, archives, the new visitors center and the Knesset Guard. They will also be taught about the rules that must be followed when interacting with lobbyists. To encourage attendance, the students have been promised there will be no pop quizzes or final exams. Moreover, participants are to receive monetary compensation (its exact figure has yet to be announced). Those who complete the course successfully will receive a certificate.


Read more at Israel Hayom.

Updated: Jun. 10, 2015