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Palestinians marking the 64 anniversary of al-Nakba (catastrophe) with protests, while Israeli security reacted with conducted arrests campaigns on May 15Palestinians marking the 64 anniversary of al-Nakba (catastrophe) with protests, while Israeli security reacted with conducted arrests campaigns on May 15Palestinians marking the 64 anniversary of al-Nakba (catastrophe) with protests, while Israeli security reacted with conducted arrests campaigns on May 15Palestinians marking the 64 anniversary of al-Nakba (catastrophe) with protests, while Israeli security reacted with conducted arrests campaigns on May 15Palestinians marking the 64 anniversary of al-Nakba (catastrophe) with protests, while Israeli security reacted with conducted arrests campaigns on May 15Palestinians marking the 64 anniversary of al-Nakba (catastrophe) with protests, while Israeli security reacted with conducted arrests campaigns on May 15Palestinians marking the 64 anniversary of al-Nakba (catastrophe) with protests, while Israeli security reacted with conducted arrests campaigns on May 15Palestinians marking the 64 anniversary of al-Nakba (catastrophe) with protests, while Israeli security reacted with conducted arrests campaigns on May 15Palestinians marking the 64 anniversary of al-Nakba (catastrophe) with protests, while Israeli security reacted with conducted arrests campaigns on May 15Palestinians marking the 64 anniversary of al-Nakba (catastrophe) with protests, while Israeli security reacted with conducted arrests campaigns on May 15

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Today: Sep 20, 2017

Education

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Education in Jerusalem

There is a need for 1400 additional class rooms for students in Jerusalem. This means that at least for 5,000 dunums of land should be allocated for constructing new schools for Palestinians.

Schools have poor infrastructure, with an average classroom density of 0.9 sq. meters per student (compared with an international standard of 1.25 - 2.0 sq. meters per student).

10,000 Palestinian students in East Jerusalem are not enrolled in the education system due to the short down of classes.

Most schools lack the healthy environment and supportive facilities, such as labs, libraries, playgrounds and computer labs. Most schools function in rented residential buildings, which were not originally designed to host schools and promote healthy academic environment.

The percentage of student drop out is 45-48%, at the Israeli administered government schools.

Of the 33,000 students and 2,000 teachers in East Jerusalem schools, as many as 6,000 pupils and more than 650 teachers face difficulties reaching their schools due to the Israeli Wall.

Psychological pressures due to the Segregation Wall and checkpoints affect the children's academic performance.

In 2008, Jerusalem Municipality spent NIS 577 for each Palestinian primary school student in East Jerusalem compared with NIS 2,372 for each Jewish student in West Jerusalem. In preschools, spending per student in West Jerusalem was 2.7 times that of East Jerusalem and in special education 2.5 times.

Factual statement

There are 93 schools in East Jerusalem with a total of 51,625 pupils. These can be divided in four categories: (i) 22 Islamic Waqf schools (8,042 pupils); (ii) 7 UNWRA schools (2,753 pupils); (iii) 29 Private schools (11,031 pupils); (iv) 35 Municipality or Jerusalem Education Authority schools (30,989 pupils).

Access

Several policies and practices limit the access of Palestinian children in Jerusalem to free and compulsory education in the Jerusalem Education Authority (JEA) schools in East Jerusalem. In order for a child to be registered in school, the JEA requires proof of residency in the city. Children, whose parents have no residency status or had their residency status revoked, yet remain in the city, are often denied their right to public education, as they are also not registered (See Fact sheet Residency rights). This means that they have to go to private schools or study outside the city boundaries. However, school certificates are part of the requested documents to proof ones centre of life.

Another factor that limits the access of Palestinian children is that the Municipal Education System in East Jerusalem suffers from a severe lack of space and facilities. The responsibility for such structures lies within the Ministry of Education, but the Ministry has not provided the necessary buildings in East Jerusalem or set out plans for such development. The Ministry of Educations solution has been to rent buildings. These buildings, which are found in almost all the Palestinian neighbourhoods, do not meet the criteria set by the Ministry of Education for schools. The Dell-Report, conducted under the instruction of the Ministerial Committee for Jerusalem Affairs in 1999, cites 370 out of the total 770 classrooms being rented that do not meet the standards. These classrooms are situated in apartment blocks or houses, designated for residential purposes and are often not suitable to host over 30 children at one time and do not have sufficient ventilation. There is a need for further development as the number of pupils is growing at an average rate of 5% a year and is projected to grow faster in the years ahead. Between 1997 and 1999 only 111 classrooms were constructed in the Arab education sector of Jerusalem, keeping the average of pupils in each class high above the level in Jewish classes.

Classes Constructed in the Educational System in Jerusalem:

Source: Statistical Yearbook of Jerusalem 1999

Quality

The Israeli Ministry of Education is in charge of funding the Municipal Education System in Jerusalem. However, the overall situation of the public Arab education system, in both budget and educational standards is insufficient. The JEA has 169 schools in West Jerusalem and 35 in East Jerusalem. However, Palestinian students comprise one-third of the school age (5-19 years) population in the city. Only in the summer of 1999, the Dell-Report revealed that the East Jerusalem school system is, in many respects, not budgeted in the same fashion as the Israeli system. The teaching methods are outdated and the studying environment lacks resources. The number of teaching hours per Jewish pupil or class is far greater than that per Palestinian pupil or class. The number of grants given to teachers for studying is 382 percent higher in the Jewish sector. This affects the skills of teachers and consequently pupils achievements.

Teaching assistance, psychologists and educational counsellors are hardly found in Palestinian public schools, while enrichment programs such as art courses, lessons about road safety and civic education do not exist at all. Municipal schools are unlikely to have a computer room. There are several schools in East Jerusalem that do not have a library, as space is needed for classes, and the books are relegated to the hallways, where they constitute a fire hazard.

Average Pupils per Class in the Municipal Education System in Jerusalem:


Source: Statistical Yearbook of Jerusalem 1999; excl. Special Needs Education

Recent developments

As a result of the growing overcrowding, the Municipality turns away children who want to register at municipality schools, advising their parents to enrol them in costly private schools, despite the fact that the Compulsory Education Law 1949 requires compulsory education for every child must be provided free of charge. Less than 60 percent of Palestinian pupils in East Jerusalem attending municipal schools in the school year 1999/2000, while about 40 percent of the pupils attend private schools in East Jerusalem.

For this school year (2001 2002) more than 3,000 Palestinian children, who requested to study in the municipal public schools, could not be accepted. An additional unknown number of children attempted to register for school but were not even recorded in the waiting lists as the municipality abruptly terminated all registration on 23 March 2001. This is in violation of the registration regulations. Mr. B. Weller, Assistant Director of the Jerusalem Education Authority and responsible for the Arab Education in Jerusalem explained this as follows: The Municipality and the ministry of Education are unable today to provide classrooms in East Jerusalem for all who seek. There is no value in continuing to record the requests of parents for hundreds or thousands of additional pupils and to plant, perhaps, unfounded hopes, when it is clear that under the present conditions it is impossible to grant requests anyway. In the Jewish sector every child is accepted for free public education.

The Israeli High Court decided in August 2001 that there is no effective solution to the plight of more that 3,000 Jerusalem Arab children who are requesting to study in public schools, as a result of continuous neglect of the Jerusalem Municipality and the Ministry of Education who have not built enough classrooms for these children.

Impact

Thirty percent of the pupils in the upper elementary level of East Jerusalem municipal schools are illiterate, while 40 % of high school students drop out prior to attaining their diploma. Clearly, the neglect of the education system in East Jerusalem by Israeli officials is at least partly responsible for these statistics. Only 56.7 % of Palestinians living in Israel and Jerusalem are still in school at the age of 17 years compared to 90 % of the Jewish-Israeli youth of the same age.

Legal statement

Israel violates the Covenant for the Rights of the Child, which it has signed, in its obligation to provide education to all children. It discriminates against Palestinians in the quality and accessibility of educational facilities. It violates the right to equality.


See also HRW's report on 'Discrimination Against Palestinian Arab Children in Israel's Schools' , December 2001.

Summary

Source: Hebrew daily 'Ha'aretz, 12 December 2001