Israel's Education Ministry, Ultra-Orthodox Schools Near Deal on Core Curriculum

Nov. 3, 2013

Source: Haaretz 


The Israel Education Ministry is in advanced negotiations with ultra-Orthodox institutions over a compromise that would have the latter introduce core subjects into their classrooms. Should the agreement be finalized, the Haredim will teach part of the core curriculum in exchange for having the state fund 75 percent of their education budget.


Currently, “extreme” Haredi schools receive 55 to 75 percent of their funding from the state, and although they are obligated to teach 55 to 75 percent of the core curriculum, many do not. Education Minister Shay Piron recently signed a regulation blocking schools from receiving more than 35 percent funding should they fail to meet core curriculum requirements.


In an effort to avert financial crisis, Haredi institutions have come to the table. Currently the ultra-Orthodox establishment is negotiating with the Education Ministry in an attempt to define the core curriculum for their purposes. The Haredi schools are likely to start teaching English, math and Modern Hebrew in full. Negotiations are underway regarding the other core subjects – Bible, literature, history, civics and science.


In order to ensure that the Haredim meet the terms of the agreement, schools will be required to subject students to all standardized testing. In exchange, ultra-Orthodox primary schools will start receiving 75% of their funding from the state.


Read more at Haaretz

Updated: Dec. 02, 2013