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Israel to Offer East Jerusalem Schools Renovation Bonus - but Only if They Ditch Palestinian Textbooks

About 20 million shekels will be allocated by the Jerusalem Affairs and Heritage Ministry, seeking to increase number of schools teaching Israeli curriculum in Arab neighborhoods; 'Pupils in East Jerusalem deserve to learn in adequate structure because it's their right,' human-rights group says.
The Jerusalem Affairs and Heritage Ministry is expected to provide special funding topping 20 million shekels ($5.2 million) for the small minority of schools that teach the Israeli curriculum in East Jerusalem, where nearly all the city’s Palestinians live.
Most schools in the city's east teach the Palestinian curriculum, while graduates of those schools take the Palestinian Authority’s matriculation exam. But in recent years, more schools have begun offering the Israeli curriculum.
This lets students take the Israeli matriculation exam, easing their acceptance into Israeli colleges and universities. Surveys have also found that increasing numbers of East Jerusalem Palestinian parents prefer that their children study the Israeli curriculum to improve their children’s educational and employment prospects.
In Palestinian areas of the city there are 180 schools that are either government institutions or private schools that receive Israeli Education Ministry funding. Last year only 10 of those schools offered classes geared toward the Israeli matriculation exam.
That number is expected to rise to 14 this year, but at most of these schools only some of the students study for the Israeli exam, representing only about 3 percent of the students overall.
The Jerusalem municipality and the Israeli Education Ministry plan to stoke the modest trend. About a year ago, the ministry approved a plan for East Jerusalem that gives priority to schools teaching the Israeli curriculum.
In contacts between ministry officials and the city, the stress is funding for physical improvements such as computer rooms and sports facilities to schools teaching the Israeli curriculum. Lower down the list is expanded instructional time.
Nisreen Alyan, a lawyer for the Association for Civil Rights in Israel, said there should be no connection between funding priorities and whether the Israeli curriculum is taught, noting that the Palestinian curriculum was used with Israeli approval. "Pupils in East Jerusalem deserve to learn in adequate structure because it's their right," she told Haaretz.
But the Jerusalem municipality said there was increasing demand for the Israeli curriculum, and many schools were not offering it, hence the special funding.
Jerusalem Affairs Minister Zeev Elkin added that the approach was to provide employment-related skills including Hebrew lessons and preparation for the Israeli matriculation exam.
“The idea is very simple. We want to help the school that is prepared to go in these directions to improve the employment integration of its students,” Elkin said. “We’ve seen the desire and demand from the parents, and we believe that market forces will work in this case.”

Nir Hasson

Haaretz Correspondent

read more: http://www.haaretz.com/israel-news/.premium-1.735527

Sche1rmata 2016 08 07 alle 17.46.16

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Video of the Week New Clashes Erupt Between Israeli Security Forces, Muslim Worshippers

Temple Mount temporarily closed to Jewish visitors after clashes with police




The Temple Mount was temporarily closed to Jewish visitors on Wednesday at the order of Jerusalem District Commander Yoram Halevy after Jews broke visitation rules at the holy site, police said. The Jewish visitors were expelled from the compound for bringing sacred books to the Mount and trying to pray there. After one of the individuals was cautioned, another took out a holy book, and the group was expelled. Meanwhile, renewed clashes erupted between protesters and Israeli security forces near the Lion's Gate in the Old City, where police used stun grenades against the demonstrators. A regular dynamic has developed involving clashes between Palestinians and Israel Police over the past several days near the Lion's Gate. Dozens of Palestinians are present at the site on a regular basis, urging devotion to the Al-Aqsa Mosque on the Temple Mount and condemning Israel. During Muslim prayer times, particularly the midday and nighttime prayers, hundreds and sometimes even thousands have been gathering there.

There have been outbreaks of violence during these periods, including stone-throwing or physical confrontations with the police. In most of these incidents, the police have been using stun grenades and sponge-tipped bullets to disperse the crowds. In a number of cases, journalists in the area have also suffered violence at the hands of the police. On Tuesday, Hassan Shaalan, a reporter for the Ynet news website, was struck by a policeman even after he identified himself as a member of the press. A group of Jerusalem-based journalists released a statement of condemnation over the incident and called on the police to permit reporters to do their jobs. The Jerusalem Police responded: "This involved an incident that took place in the course of violent disturbances of the peace that occurred in Jerusalem while the police were acting to remove the demonstrators from the street after some of them refused to vacate. The forces working on the scene are under constant threat to their lives. http://www.haaretz.com/israel-news/1.802141

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