Distr.

GENERAL

E/1990/5/Add.39(3)
20 January 1998


Original: ENGLISH
Initial report : Israel. 01/20/1998.
E/1990/5/Add.39(3). (State Party Report)

Convention Abbreviation: CESCR
[go to part I of the document] Convention Documents
[go to part II of the document] Convention Documents
PART III

CONTENTS (cont')
    Paragraphs
      Article 12 - The right to the highest attainable standard of health
    529 - 598
      Article 13 - The right to education
    599 - 687
      Article 15 - The right to take part in cultural life and enjoy scientific progress
    688 - 791
Article 12 - The right to the highest attainable standard of health

Introductory overview

529. Israel is a member party of the World Health Organization (WHO). Israel's last report to the WHO, “Highlights on Health in Israel”, was submitted in 1996 and covers data up to 1993. It is attached in Annex 3 of this report.

530. This introductory overview is a reproduction of the summary of the report, updated to 1996, with the addition of the following table, which presents the main data on the indicators of the physical and mental health of the Israeli population and on the change in these indicators over time:


SELECTED HFA INDICATORS FOR ISRAEL
Indicator title
1980
1981
1982
1983
1984
1985
1986
1987
1988
1989
1990
1991
1992
1993
1994
1995
    1. Demographic and socio-economic
    Mid-year population, total
3,879,000
3,949,700
4,026,700
4,037,600
4,159,100
4,232,900
4,298,800
4,368,900
4,441,600
4,518,200
4,660,100
4,946,200
5,123,500
5,261,400
5,399,300
5,539,700
    Mid-year population, male
1,938,300
1,973,000
2,010,800
2,011,600
2,075,700
2,112,300
2,144,600
2,179,000
2,215,100
2,253,200
2,321,000
2,458,300
2,543,000
2,609,400
2,675,800
.
    Mid-year population, female
1,940,700
1,976,700
2,015,900
2,026,000
2,083,400
2,120,600
2,154,200
2,189,900
2,226,500
2,265,000
2,339,100
2,487,900
2,580,500
2,652,000
2,723,500
.
    Live birth, total
93,484
93,308
96,695
98,724
98,478
99,376
99,341
99,022
100,454
100,757
103,349
105,725
110,062
103,330
114,543
117,182
    Live birth, male
48,144
47,204
49,566
50,838
50,914
50,911
50,936
50,559
51,603
51,638
53,013
54,141
56,603
57,775
58,855
60,155
    Live birth, female
45,340
46,104
47,129
47,886
47,564
48,465
48,405
48,463
48,851
49,119
50,336
51,584
53,459
45,555
55,688
57,027
    Total fertility rate
3.14
3.06
3.12
3.14
3.13
3.12
3.09
3.05
3.06
2.90
2.80
2.80
2.70
2.80
2.90
.
    % Unemployed persons, total
5
5
5
5
6
7
7
6
6
9
10
11
11
10
8
6
    Annual rate of inflation
133
102
132
191
445
185
20
16
16
21
18
18
9
11
15
8
    GNP, US$ per capita
5,423
5,746
5,968
6,526
5,977
5,474
6,677
7,881
9,660
9,633
10,958
11,766
12,589
12,346
13,580
15,406
    GDP, US$ per capita
5,615
5,887
6,151
6,729
6,240
5,699
6,922
8,140
9,911
9,887
11,223
11,987
12,822
12,522
13,752
15,660
    GDP, PPP$ per capita
6,922
7,756
8,269
8,813
9,221
9,807
9,947
10,728
11,339
11,794
12,647
13,288
13,942
14,346
15,205
16,273
    2. Health status
    Number of deadborn fetuses,
    1,000 + grams
422
504
482
506
469
459
423
457
453
418
343
396
409
.
.
    Number of deaths, 0 - 6 days,
    1,000 + grams
.
385
328
380
370
321
325
317
326
280
293
258
242
204
208
193
    Number of live births, 1,000 + grams
.
91,205
94,224
96,765
96,157
97,248
97,637
97,801
99,119
99,406
101,283
104,182
107,132
109,149
111,391
113,993
    Number of deaths, 0 - 6 days,
    500 + grams
.
629
550
608
575
551
525
522
469
461
460
414
408
339
365
331
    Number of deadborn fetuses,
    500 + grams
455
547
529
539
509
524
478
517
515
469
381
448
458
.
.
.
    New cases, tuberculosis
249
227
232
222
257
368
239
184
226
160
234
505
345
419
343
392
    New cases, hepatitis - total
3,924
4,525
3,146
3,898
4,965
4,558
3,208
2,058
2,813
2,452
2,650
1,751
1,353
3,547
3,891
2.308
    New cases, hepatitis - A
. . . . . . . . . .
.
.
1,037
3,041
3,483
2,165
    New cases, hepatitis - B
. . . . . . . . . .
.
.
139
138
132
69
    New cases, syphilis
. . . .
122
160
54
32
41
45
.
.
156
118
.
    New cases, gonococcal infections
. . . .
644
674
424
127
135
146
0
0
0
0
0
0
Indicator title
1980
1981
1982
1983
1984
1985
1986
1987
1988
1989
1990
1991
1992
1993
1994
1995
    New cases, pertussis
19
25
62
78
7
24
47
96
7
260
189
35
99
138
71
59
    Number of new cases, measles
215
228
7,864
129
137
3,005
1,951
438
178
29
212
991
66
141
1,565
28
    Number of new cases, malaria
. . . . . .
36
94
268
251
183
67
213
58
26
45
    Number of new cases, diphtheria
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
1
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
Number of new cases,
    tetanus
2
3
3
2
2
3
1
1
3
1
0
5
0
2
1
1
    Number of new cases,
    acute poliomyelitis
11
8
5
4
1
2
0
2
16
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
    Number of new cases,
    congenital rubella
. . . . . .
0
2
. . .
0
6
2
1
0
    Number of new cases,
    neonatal
0
1
2
1
0
0
0
1
2
1
0
0
0
0
0
0
    Number of new cases,
    rubella
881
451
602
2,302
7,189
556
284
4,220
1,718
354
99
437
2,145
104
62
46
    Number of new cases,
    mumps
3,041
5,956
5,092
3,904
6,584
2,113
1,052
2,579
6,999
891
364
349
676
895
891
117
    Estimated cumulative cases,
    HIV seropositive
. . . . . . . . . . . . . .
2,000
2,000
    New cases, clinically
    diagnosed AIDS
.
0
2
8
5
10
25
19
24
34
45
37
39
55
32
53
    Hospital discharges:
    infectious and parasitic diseases
. . . . . . .
22,798
. . . . . .
30,245
.
    Hospital discharges:
    all cancers
. . . . . . .
30,632
. . . . . .
54,374
.
    Number of new cases of cancer,
    all sites, total
8,866
8,942
8,980
8,663
9,785
9,930
10,106
10,088
10,165
10,987
12,253
13,109
13,354
14,072
.
.
    Number of new cases of cancer,
    all sites, male
4,400
4,409
4,393
4,273
4,794
4,883
4,961
4,992
4,878
5,283
5,820
6,117
6,389
6,694
.
.
    Number of new cases of cancer,
    all sites, female
4,466
4,533
4,587
4,390
4,991
5,047
5,145
5,096
5,278
5,704
6,433
6,992
6,965
7,378
.
.
    Number of cases,
    malignant neoplasms, total
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
.
Indicator title
1980
1981
1982
1983
1984
1985
1986
1987
1988
1989
1990
1991
1992
1993
1994
1995
    Number of cases,
    malignant neoplasms, male
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
.
    Number of cases,
    malignant neoplasms, female
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
.
    Number of new cases of trachea/
    bronchus/lung cancer, total
718
715
757
755
858
883
792
870
829
937
946
949
905
987
.
.
Number of new cases of trachea/
    bronchus/lung cancer, male
536
532
565
543
637
647
554
654
601
667
692
680
661
700
.
.
    Number of new cases of trachea/
    bronchus/lung cancer, female
182
183
192
212
221
236
238
216
228
270
254
269
244
287
.
.
    New cases, cancer of the
    female breast
1,174
1,152
1,243
1,128
1,317
1,289
1,360
1,305
1,409
1,616
1,811
2,005
2,049
2,153
.
.
    New cases, cancer of the cervix
64
82
86
85
66
95
79
91
97
124
118
117
148
139
.
.
    Number of cases, diabetes mellitus
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
.
    Number, mental health patients
    in hospital, 365 + day
6,163
6,106
6,141
6,102
5,977
5,854
5,606
5,285
5,076
5,014
4,951
4,865
4,812
4,824
4,771
4,578
    Number of new cases of
    mental disorders
4,548
4,486
3,962
3,570
3,812
3,485
3,124
3,115
2,933
3,196
3,293
3,558
3,517
3,699
3,714
4,141
    Number of new cases
    of alcoholic psychosis
13
5
30
31
39
28
22
26
29
23
27
35
38
35
45
51
    Number of cases,
    mental disorders
8,678
. .
8,164
8,059
7,780
.
7,167
7,036
.
6,877
.
6,867
6,866
6,949
6,846
    Hospital discharges: diseases of
    circulatory system
. . . . . . .
64,876
. . . . . .
102,302
.
    Hospital discharges:
    ischaemic heart disease
. . . . . . .
31,127
. . . . . .
47,439
.
    Hospital discharges:
    cerebrovascular diseases
. . . . . . .
7,365
. . . . . .
12,425
.
    Hospital discharges:
    diseases of respiratory system
. . . . . . .
41,060
. . . . . .
65,368
.
    Number of cases, chronic
    obstructive pulmonary diseases
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
.
Indicator title
1980
1981
1982
1983
1984
1985
1986
1987
1988
1989
1990
1991
1992
1993
1994
1995
    Hospital discharges:
    diseases of digestive system
. . . . . . .
42,879
. . . . . .
63,786
.
    Hospital discharges: diseases
    musculoskeletal & connect.tissue
. . . . . . .
14,708
. . . . . .
26,280
.
    Hospital discharges:
    injury and poisoning
. . . . . . .
37,069
. . . . . .
55,576
.
    Absenteeism due to illness,
    days per person per year
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
.
Newly granted invalidity
    (disability) cases
. . . . . . . . .
13,445
14,117
11,659
18,176
20,667
20,801
15,516
    Number, persons receiving social
    benefits due to disablement
. . . . . . . . .
108,499
111,702
113,931
118,401
125,436
132,618
140,089
    % of disabled regular occupation,
    15 - 64 years
. . . . . . .
21
. . . . . . .
.

E/1990/5/Add.39
page 1
E/1990/5/Add.39
page 1
531. The population of Israel is relatively young. This is understandable in light of the fact that the population has increased almost sixfold since the country's independence in 1948, mainly as a result of immigration.

532. Life expectancy at birth in Israel was 76.6 years in 1992, close to the average in the European Union (EU). Male life expectancy was 74.7 years, the third highest among a reference group of 20 European countries*. In marked contrast, female life expectancy was 78.5 years, sixteenth highest and well below the EU average of 80.0 years. Thus, the difference in life expectancy in Israel between men and women is the smallest of the 20 reference countries. The same situation existed in 1994 when life expectancy for men was 75.5 years and for women, 79.5 years. This mortality pattern, where male mortality is among the lowest in the reference countries, while that of women among the highest, also holds for all the main causes of death.

533. Infant mortality declined by 37 per cent between 1982 and 1992, but remained the second highest among the reference countries. By 1995, however, the rate had fallen from 7.5 to 6.8 per 1,000 live births.

534. The Standardized Death Rate (SDR) for cardiovascular diseases in the 0-64 age group was close to the EU average in 1992. The SDRs for ischaemic heart disease were the fifth highest of the reference countries for women but the eighth lowest for men. The SDRs for cerebrovascular diseases in the 0-64 age group were close to the EU average for women and below the average for men. In both these diseases, both male and female SDRs fell sharply from 1982 to 1992.

535. The SDR for cancer in the 0-64 age group was one of the lowest in the European reference countries. The overall cancer rate for men was the lowest of all these countries, while the rate for women was close to the EU average. The SDR for external causes was below the EU average for men and close to the average for women. With respect to suicide, Israeli males show a lower average than general in the EU (its increase of 43 per cent over the last 10 years is, however, one of the highest) but the rate for women is about the average.

536. Nationwide health promotion programmes have gained momentum during the last few years, especially those emphasizing physical activity. The percentage of smokers in the over-20 population declined from 38 per cent in 1973 to 31 per cent in 1992. Among women the drop was even greater. A number of new laws restricting smoking in public areas and workplaces have recently come into force. Alcohol consumption in 1993 was the lowest of all the reference countries.

537. Persons aged 20-74 who were taking medication or following a special diet for hypertension make up 8.5 per cent of the population. The prevalence of high-serum cholesterol (240 mg/dl or more) in the working population




* The 15 member States of the European Union plus Iceland, Israel, Malta, Norway, and Switzerland.aged 20-64 is 18.3 per cent. Some 25 per cent of this population has been estimated to be overweight. Since the 1950s, the intake per head of total calories, fats, animal fats, and protein has increased. The level of leisure-time activity in the general population is low: some 20 per cent of persons aged 14+ participate in such activity at least once a week.

538. Environmental control is the joint responsibility of the Ministry of Health and the Ministry of the Environment. Popular awareness of environmental issues is growing: air and water quality are the key issues.

539. Health expenditure has continued to rise as a percentage of GNP, reaching 8.7 per cent in 1995.

National health policy

540. After years of political and professional debate, the health-care system in Israel is at last in the process of fundamental reform, both of its conceptualization and its services. There are three major elements to the reform:

- a National Health Insurance Law

- the withdrawal of the Government from direct health-care provision

- the internal reorganization of the Ministry of Health.

The National Health Insurance Law

541. The Israeli Government has always assumed its responsibility to ensure universal enjoyment of basic health services. This commitment, which grew in scope over the years, was for the first time legally entrenched, with the enactment of the National Health Insurance Law 1994, which came into effect in January 1995. The following is the main features of this complex piece of legislation. (The full text is attached in Annex 1 to this report.)

542. This new law is based on mandatory insurance. All residents of Israel are insured by one of the four authorized health funds, each of which must provide, at least, the basic package of services and medications, as detailed in the law. Health insurance premiums are centrally collected by the National Insurance Institute, in the same way Social Security Insurance is collected (see under article 9 of the Covenant). These premiums are then distributed to the Health funds according to a capitation formula. It should be stressed that one’s right to health services is secured even in case insurance premiums failed to be paid.

543. The basic package of services mandated by the law includes all basic physical and mental primary care, including services and medications. Every insured person has the right to choose his/her health fund and no fund may refuse to enrol an applicant, regardless of age, or physical or mental condition.

544. The State's responsibility under the law is not only to regulate the activities of the Health funds (including recognition, supervision, enforcement, etc.). Actually, regulation powers were always given to, and used by, the Minister of Health in various laws - the People's Health Ordinance 1940, the Physicians Ordinance [New Version] 1976, the Dentists Ordinance [New Version] 1976, the Rights of the Patient Law 1996 (full text of the latter is attached in Annex 2 to this report).

545. The importance of the National Health Insurance Law in the context of the present Covenant, lies in that it imposes on the Ministry of Finance the final responsibility to refund the health funds for any gap between their income from insurance premiums and their factual expenses on all services mandated by the law.

546. The Ministry of Health's goal is to concentrate on policy-making, long-term planning, setting performance standards, quality control and quality insurance, and the evaluation of essential data. Hence, internal reorganization of the Ministry has already resulted in the establishment of new departments, e.g. a department of performance standards.

547. The Ministry owns and operates a portion of Israeli hospitals - 23 per cent of general hospitals, 50 per cent of mental health hospitals, and 4 per cent of geriatric hospitals. The remainder are profit-making or public non-profit facilities. Under the reformed system, government hospitals will become self-financing, non-profit facilities. The Ministry of Health will supervise their operation but not participate directly in their day-to-day operation.

548. The first steps taken by the Government towards transformation of its hospitals into legally autonomous entities have encountered resistance, especially from trade unions. The process is certainly going to be a long one.

549. At community level, primary health care is provided in Israel by the following:

- Health fund clinics

- Hospital outpatient clinics and emergency rooms

- Private clinics

- Family health centres (also provide preventive care).

550. Most primary care is supplied by the four health funds, either by direct provision through its own clinics and medical staff or by purchase. Member premiums cover the cost of most of these services, both outpatient and in-patient, as well as medications. Each insured person is free to choose any of the general practitioners or specialist physicians from the list employed by his/her health fund. Most affiliated physicians are not paid fee-per-visit but by salary or reimbursement.

551. A national survey of health services utilization, conducted in the first quarter of 1993, showed that 83 per cent of the most recent visits to a general practitioner/family doctor were made to health fund clinics, 12 per cent to private clinics, and 3 per cent to hospital outpatient clinics or emergency rooms. With respect to visits to specialists, 61 per cent took place at health fund clinics, 21 per cent at hospital outpatient clinics or emergency rooms, and 16 per cent at private clinics.

552. Family health centres span the whole country, operated by central government, local government authorities or the health funds, according to an agreed geographical distribution. Some 1,000 cover the urban areas while public health nurses visit small and peripheral localities at least once every two weeks. The services provided comprise physicians’ examinations, developmental examinations, monitoring of breastfeeding, vaccination, and guidance and advice to mothers.

Long-term policy

553. In 1989 the Ministry of Health issued its Guidelines for Long-term National Health Policy in Israel, in which it formulated recommendations incorporating and promoting equity in health, health promotion and disease prevention, community involvement, intersectoral cooperation, primary medical care and international cooperation as the six principles underlying health objectives and priorities for Israel.

554. The strategy that follows aims at translating a number of policy goals into specific activities based on solid epidemiological data. The strategy is based on the following principles:

(a) Equity in health: While absolute equity in health is out of reach for biological/genetic reasons, the National Health Insurance Act that came into force on 1 January 1995 at least ensures equity of access to health-care services for the whole population. In addition, emphasis will be placed on reducing the gaps in health status between different population groups, such as new immigrants from specific countries, certain ethnic minorities, and people living in underprivileged areas.

(b) Primary health care: The main means for ensuring equity will be primary health care, as defined by the World Health Organization under its policy of Health for All by the Year 2000. Primary care will include health promotion, health protection, disease prevention, medical care, and rehabilitation and will be delivered by multidisciplinary teams of staffers from medicine, nursing, social work, and other health professions.

(c) Government responsibility: The Government will assume responsibility for the health of the people to the same degree as its responsibility for its welfare in other domains, such as security and education. It will be accountable to the people for the health service it guarantees.

(d) The rights of individuals and the general public: Individuals and the public at large will have the right to participate actively in shaping public health services and in supervising them. The Government will encourage such participation, which will include public debate, including in the mass media.

(e) Appropriate health technology: The Government will take measures to ensure the use of the appropriate technology, from the scientific, technical, social and economic points of view, in all areas of health care. It will encourage all concerned to take similar measures.

(f) Intersectoral and interdisciplinary action: To ensure an appropriate level of health, the Government will foster coordinated action by all sectors and disciplines concerned.

(g) Relationship between divisions of the health-care system: The Government will ensure appropriate mutual relationship between the primary, secondary and tertiary sections of the health system. This will entail removing unnecessary duplication, strengthening primary care, and providing incentives to hospitals to support other divisions of the system.

(h) Command and coordination: The Ministry of Health will provide command and coordination across all components of the strategy. In view of the intersectoral nature of the strategy, it will be approved by the Government as a whole.

555. The strategy has the following components:

- A demographic and epidemiological overview, describing the historical factors and current health situation that led to the strategy.

- The 1995 Health Care System Reforms introducing universal national health insurance and managerial autonomy for public hospitals, and reshaping the functions of the Ministry of Health.

- Substantive health programmes. A number of programmes have been selected for priority attention. Specific targets have been set, and related activities have been allocated to sectors, institutions, professions, and public bodies within the health-care system.

- Monitoring and evaluation are integral parts of the strategy. Inter alia, the degree of observance of strategy principles will be measured. Indicators will be developed to measure quality of life and welfare, including indicators of disability-adjusted life-year gain.

The following is the list of priority programmes:

(a) Health promotion

(b) Family health

(c) Control of cardiovascular diseases

(d) Control of malignant diseases

(e) Control of diabetes

(f) Mental health

(g) Control of substance abuse and alcoholism

(h) Prevention of accidents and physical and sexual violence

(i) Oral health

556. In addition, mention should be made of the National Council for Community Health. This council was established in 1996 with the mandate to advise the Ministry of Health on policy on primary health care. The council has recommended that by the year 2000 each resident should have a designated “personal physician”, who will provide for them a coordinated and integrated health package.

Health expenditures

557. Health expenditure as a percentage of GNP reached 8.7 per cent in 1995, compared to 8.9 per cent in 1994, 7.8 per cent in 1992, and 7.8 per cent in 1989. In 1993, households financed 52 per cent of national expenditure on health care via health insurance premiums and out-of-pocket costs, as against 32 per cent in 1984. The difference is explained by the fact that premiums and out-of-pocket costs have been considerably raised. In 1984, households’ payments to health funds covered 12 per cent of national health expenditure, in 1993 the amount was 25 per cent. This reduction in the proportion of health-care costs funded from general taxation has put an increasing burden on households. Out-of-pocket costs to households for medications and services from private physicians, clinics, and dentists accounted for 20 per cent of total health-care expenditure in 1984 and for 27 per cent in 1993. In the same period, central government financing decreased from 52 per cent to 44 per cent of total health-care costs.

558. Hospital care continues to consume the greater part of health-care spending. This percentage rose continuously until 1980 when it reached 47 per cent of current spending. It then gradually declined, until 1994 when the percentage spent on hospital care was 41 per cent. For the last decade, spending on community-based facilities and preventive care has remained constant at around 33 per cent, rising to 38 per cent in 1994, of which some 60 per cent-70 per cent goes on primary care.

Health indicators of the World Health Organization

559. The trend in the infant mortality rate per 1,000 live births has been as follows:
Table 1: Infant mortality 1989-1995
Total
Jews
Non-Jews
1989
10.1
8.2
14.7
1990
9.9
7.9
14.9
1991
9.2
7.2
14.2
1992
9.4
7.5
14.3
1993
7.8
5.7
12.8
1994
7.5
5.7
11.5
1995
6.8
5.6
9.6

560. A large part of the fall in infant mortality is due to the fall in mortality from infectious diseases and pneumonia. Death from congenital disorders is also showing a downward trend. In every population group, the higher the mother’s education level, the lower the infant mortality rate. Mothers in the age groups “Less than 20” and “35+” show a higher infant mortality rate than mothers in the 20-34 age group.


Table 2: Infant mortality (rate per 1,000 live births) by
religion and age of neonate at death, 1990-1994


Total
Early neonatal
mortality
0-6 days
Late neonatal mortality 7-27 days
Post-neonatal mortality 28-365 days
Rate
Per cent
Rate
Per cent
Rate
Per cent
Rate
Per cent
Total
8.8
100
4.1
46.6
1.4
15.9
3.2
36.4
Jews
6.8
100
3.6
52.9
1.2
17.6
2.0
29.4
Non-Jews
13.5
100
5.3
39.2
1.9
14.1
6.3
46.7


561. From 1990 to 1994, almost half the deaths of neonates occurred in the first six days of life, this proportion being much lower among non-Jews than among Jews (39.2 per cent v. 52.9 per cent). The disparity in post-neonatal death rates (28-265 days) between Jews and non-Jews is particularly wide (2.0 v. 6.3) and so is the disparity in the percentage of post-neonatal deaths in total infant mortality (29.4 per cent v. 46.7 per cent). The reason for the relatively high rates of mortality in the post-neonatal period among non-Jews should be investigated, as death at this time of life is usually associated with environmental factors, such as infectious diseases and accidents, and is to a considerable extent preventable. (Programmes for dealing with this problem are detailed below, in Section 7.)


Table 3: Infant mortality (rate per 1,000 live births) in 24 countries 1983-1993

    Country
1983 1993
    Turkey
82.952.6
    Portugal
19.28.7
    Greece
14.68.5
    USA
11.28.3
    Belgium
10.68.0
    Israel
13.77.8
    Jews
11.45.7
    Non-Jews
22.713.1
    Spain
10.97.6
    Italy
12.37.3
    New Zealand
12.57.3
    Canada
8.56.8
    Austria
11.96.5
    France
9.16.5
    The Netherlands
8.46.3
    Australia
9.66.1
    Ireland
9.85.9
    Germany
10.25.8
    Switzerland
7.65.6
    Denmark
7.75.4
    Norway
7.95.0
    Iceland
6.24.8
    Sweden
7.04.8
    Finland
6.14.4
    U.K.
10.16.6*
    Japan
6.24.5*

* 1992

562. Israel is currently in 19th place out of the 24 developed countries in the above table (compared to 21st place in 1983), with an infant mortality rate about that of Italy, Belgium and Spain. The rate among Israeli Jews is close to that in Germany, Denmark and Switzerland, ranking 7th out of the 24.

563. Water supply: Almost all Israeli households (99.8 per cent) are connected to the main water supply networks. About two thirds of Israel’s water is pumped from the Sea of Galilee and the national aquifer. Galilee water is piped all the way to the south of the country. For about 50,000 Bedouin, the majority in the Negev (south), water is not piped directly to the family home but to Mekorot National Water Co. standpipes, from where it is carried by vehicle, camel, or on foot to the family home.

564. Sewage: Most households (80 per cent) dispose of their sewage via the central sewage system. Some small settlements use septic tanks and cesspools, but they are gradually being connected to the central sewage system.

565. Immunization: The percentage of children immunized against diphtheria, pertussis, tetanus, measles and poliomyelitis is as follows:


DTP
4 doses
eIPV
3 doses
OPV
3 doses
MMR
1 dose
    1993
    Total
92
93
93
95
    Jews
91
92
92
94
    Non-Jews
94
95
95
96
    1994
    Total
91
92
92
94
    Jews
90
91
91
93
    Non-Jews
93
94
93
97
    1995
    Total
94
95
95
95
    Jews
93
94
94
94
    Non-Jews
98
99
98
98
* Israel no longer immunizes routinely against tuberculosis, except for new immigrants from Ethiopia, India and Yemen.

566. Life expectancy data are as follows:
LIFE EXPECTANCY(1), BY SEX AND POPULATION GROUP
Arabs and others
JewsTotal population
Females
Males
FemalesMalesFemalesMales
1930 - 1932
62.759.9
1933 - 1935
61.859.5
1936 - 1938
64.560.8
1939 - 1941
64.662.3
1942 - 1944
65.964.1
1949
67.664.9
1950 - 1954
70.167.2
1955 - 1959
71.869.0
1960 - 1964
73.170.6
1965 - 1969 (2)
73.470.2
1970 - 1974 (2) (3)R
71.9
68.5
73.870.673.470.1
1975 - 1979
72.0
69.2
75.371.774.771.2
1975
71.5
68.2
74.570.973.970.3
1976
72.4
69.6
75.471.674.871.2
1977
71.3
68.5
75.471.974.771.3
1978
72.0
69.1
75.671.975.071.5
1979
73.1
70.0
75.872.375.371.8
1980 - 1984 (2) R
74.0
70.8
76.573.176.172.7
1980
73.4
70.0
76.272.575.772.1
1981
74.2
70.6
76.373.175.972.7
1982 (2)
73.3
70.3
76.272.875.872.5
1983
74.1
71.2
76.673.276.272.8
1984
74.2
71.5
77.173.576.673.1
1985 - 1989
75.5
72.7
77.874.177.473.8
1985
75.8
72.0
77.373.977.073.5
1986
75.0
72.2
77.173.576.873.2
1987
75.8
73.2
77.773.977.073.6
1988
75.1
72.4
78.074.277.573.9
1989
75.5
73.1
78.574.978.174.6
1990 - 1994
76.3
73.5
79.275.578.875.1
1990
75.9
73.3
78.975.378.474.9
1991
75.7
74.2
79.075.478.575.1
1992
75.5
72.4
78.975.278.474.7
1993
76.9
73.6
79.575.779.175.3
1994
77.1
73.8
79.775.979.475.5
(1) Data for multi-year periods are arithmetical means of the yearly expectancies.

(2) Exct. war casualties: see introduction.

(3) For total population and Arabs and others - averages of 1971-1974.

567. The relatively low life expectancy for Israeli women has not yet been explained. It appears to be related to a relatively high mortality from cardiovascular diseases and breast cancer.

568. Access to trained personnel: The entire population has access to trained personnel for the treatment of common diseases and injuries and a regular supply of 20 essential drugs is available within one hour’s walking or travelling distance.

569. All pregnant women have access to trained personnel during pregnancy. In 1992, the maternal death rate was 5.45 per 100,000 live births, having risen from the level in 1979-1980. The 1990-1992 rate was the ninth lowest of all European Union countries. All infants have access to trained health care.
Environmental control

570. Environmental control, as far as health protection is concerned, is the joint responsibility of the Ministry of Health and Ministry of Environment.

Water pollution

571. Wastewater from households, agriculture and industry can pollute natural water sources. The Israeli Supreme Court on several occasions has recognized the importance of protecting the environment against industrial harm. It recently called for more severe sentences for offenders:

572. Considerable efforts are made to prevent water pollution. Effluents are recycled for secondary use. Administrative authorities have been set up to control the effluent contamination of groundwater and rivers and to promote the restoration of rivers. Treated effluents are mainly kept to agricultural use. Standards of effluent quality are strictly monitored to prevent damage to public health and crops.

573. Water for domestic use is inspected and tested for bacteria and unwanted chemicals in compliance with regularly updated national standards and the recommendations of the WHO. In the past four years, water quality has substantially improved. In 1994, only 4 per cent of all test results showed the possibility of contamination. Fuel disposal and agricultural practice are also causes of water contamination.

Air pollution

574. The main sources of air pollution are energy production, transport, and industrial manufacture. A new national air quality policy was drawn up in 1994, as follows: preventing air pollution by integrating environmental considerations into physical planning, regular monitoring and periodic control systems, legislation and enforcement (including ambient and emission standards), reducing sources of pollution, and reducing pollutant emissions from motor vehicles.

575. The energy economy is based on fossil fuels, mainly oil and coal. The pollution released into the atmosphere by fuel combustion shows that levels of sulphur oxides and lead have fallen, but levels of carbon dioxide, carbon monoxide, nitrogen oxides and hydrocarbons have risen. There has been no change in the concentrations of suspended particulate matter.

576. In 1994, 63 air quality monitoring stations were in operation. All monitor sulphur dioxide, most monitor nitrogen oxides and particulate matter, and a few monitor ozone and/or carbon monoxide. New devices monitor airborne chemicals at hazardous waste disposal sites. The limited information available indicates that sulphur dioxide levels are mostly below regulation limits, nitrogen dioxide is significantly above the limit in some areas, and ozone levels in most places exceed recommended limits.

577. As it stands today, the monitoring network is not an adequate basis for formulating a national air quality management programme. Therefore, Israel has just completed the draft plan of a multi-million-dollar national air monitoring network with a central data storage and display centre. The new network will comprise three operational levels - local monitoring stations, regional control centres and a national data processing centre. Monitoring stations will vary according to the pollutants likely to be found. Fifty new stations are planned to reinforce the existing 63. The network is to be constructed over a three-year period.

Farmland contamination

578. Three major groups of pollutants endanger farmland – fertilizers, heavy metals, pesticides and other organic additives.

579. The overuse or improper management of fertilizers results in soil pollution, mostly by nitrates. The pollution of drinking water sources by nitrates leaching from farmland has already been recorded. The accumulation of nitrates in edible crops is an obvious danger.

580. The main source of heavy metals in farmland is irrigation with polluted water or the application of contaminated solid additives. The high pH value of soil in Israel reduces the danger of plant uptake of, and water contamination by, heavy metals.

581. The use of pesticides imposes an obvious danger of toxic traces remaining in edible crops, as well as posing a risk to farmers. Residues in soil may reach water sources or be taken up by crops or other components of the soil biota, and thus reach the food chain.

Preventive care

582. The chief means of preventing infectious diseases is the vaccination programme administered by Mother and Child Clinics to neonates and toddlers. Population coverage is among the highest in the world, as stated above “Immunization”.

583. In addition, cases of bacterial meningitis (meningococcal and H. influenza b) or hepatitis A, all the patient’s contacts are treated by preventive measures, administered without payment by District Health Office (DHO) staff. The DHOs also monitor sanitary conditions in children’s residential institutions and nursing homes to prevent illness spread by fecal-oral routes. On every report of a food-borne outbreak, DHO staff track down the source of the outbreak and take the necessary steps to improve conditions.

584. Under article 15 of the People’s Health Ordinance 1940, the Director-General of the Ministry of Health or a District Health Office have the power to have any person infected with an infectious disease placed in a hospital for infectious diseases or other appropriate form of isolation, should his/her current accommodation not permit taking the precautions necessary to contain the spread of the disease.

Vulnerable groups

585. Until the end of 1994, most residents of the State of Israel were insured voluntarily in four health funds which provided medical services to 95 per cent of the population, each fund having its own particular conditions of coverage. About 200,000-300,000 persons (including about 90,000 children) were not insured in any of these funds, some of them of their own free will, preferring a private medical service, and others due to their inability to afford the monthly payment.

586. In addition to these four funds, there were (and still are) voluntary medical services available for the needy, both in the Jewish sector, mainly in ultra-orthodox circles, and in the non-Jewish sector, in charity organizations run by the various churches.

587. In January 1995 the Health Insurance Law came into effect, introducing far-reaching changes in the health system of Israel, especially in terms of equality in enjoyment of health services. One of the foremost changes was that every resident in Israel became obliged to insure him/herself in health insurance. (The definition of “resident” being the one used in the National Insurance Institute.) A person who wishes to be insured above and beyond what is provided by the basic “basket of services” defined in the law may arrange for additional, supplementary insurance by means of programmes offered by the health funds and authorized by the Ministry of Health and by the supervisor of insurance in the Ministry of Finance. The operation of the supplementary insurance programmes is closely followed and supervised by the State authorities in order to ensure that the services included therein are indeed provided in addition to the basic basket, and not instead of them.

588. Furthermore, the health funds very quickly improved their services, especially within Arab communities, in order to raise their number of members and accordingly - their funding (which the law sets by a per capita formula). Since 1993 the Ministry of Health spent about 6.5 million NIS (approximately $1.8 million) in building tens of new Mother and Child Health Care services in Arab towns and villages. The Ministry’s budgets during the same period also included a sum of about 9.7 million NIS (approximately $2.7 million), aimed at “closing the gaps within Arab sector” in the field of preventive care.

589. The Ministry of Health is working intensively to reduce the Israeli Arab infant mortality rate, which is higher than among Jewish Israelis. The infant mortality rate is indeed a product of socio-economic conditions. For instance, an important reason for the gap on this indicator between Jews and non-Jews is the much higher rate of marriage between close relatives among Arabs, and particularly among Bedouin, as compared to Jews, so that the rate of congenital defects in Arab neonates is very high.

590. In the framework of the Ministry’s education/information project to reduce the incidence of very young wives giving birth and to reduce infant mortality in high risk groups, an information/education campaign is being conducted on the results of inter-familial marriage. Several mobile Family Health Clinics travel among the nomadic Bedouin tribes in the south and Arab settlements of the north in an “outreach” campaign, one of whose main efforts is to raise immunization coverage for neonates and children. It should be noted that immunization coverage among the Arab population as a whole is very high - over 95 per cent.

591. One prong of the project attempts to discourage marriage among close relatives; another attempts to encourage pregnant women to make more use of in utero diagnostic procedures; and a third aims to encourage mothers to make more use of the Mother and Child Health Care services dispersed throughout the country. One cannot measure the short-term results of such projects. More time is required before measurable results are to be expected.

592. Nevertheless, the overall health-care situation of the Bedouin, living mainly in the sparsely populated areas of the south of the country, is worse than that of the general population. The radical solution is their transfer to permanent settlements, which is current national policy. Detailed analysis of this topic is provided in this report under article 11 of the Covenant (“Illegal Settlements”).

593. In the interim, the following special measures are being taken:

- Every Bedouin encampment is connected on request to the Mekorot pipe-system;

- Leaflets are distributed explaining how to prevent infection via the water supply between standpipe and the encampment and within the encampment.

Community participation

594. Eighteen Israeli towns are participants in the Healthy Cities Project, whose objectives are as follows:

(a) To eliminate or reduce health status disparities between population groups;

(b) To help develop preventive medicine;

(c) To promote health.

595. All measures are based on a local needs assessment and are carried out with the cooperation of local citizens. Each participating town prepares a health profile of the town and then appoints a Project Steering Committee, comprising representatives of all health-care service providers in the town (including volunteers) and of the public. The committee reviews the health status profile and then defines needs and the priority between them.

596. Local Community Centres in Israel also run health promotion programmes.

Health education

597. The relatively high rate of HIV infection among Ethiopian Jews in Israel has persuaded the Government to allocate an NIS 4.5 million budget to a multi-project AIDS prevention plan. The planned projects are targeted at three groups of population:

(a) HIV patients and carriers. Coordinators from the Ethiopian community will make contact with all HIV patients and carriers in their local communities. They will help them communicate with the professionals at the local AIDS Treatment Centre and educate them in ways to avoid spreading the disease, principally by teaching safe sex;

(b) The Ethiopian community at large. Health education projects for schools, the army, and higher educational institutions are planned. The mass media will also be used;

(c) Israeli (non-Ethiopian) care-givers. Seminars will be conducted periodically for teachers, social workers, health-care professionals, and workers in immigrant absorption who come into contact with Ethiopians. The aim is to help the professionals understand Ethiopian culture and thus enable them to be more sensitive and effective in their dealings with Ethiopian clients.

598. Projects are under way in the towns Afula, Hadera, and Beersheva, among the non-Jewish population, to discourage marriage between close relatives and to encourage the acceptance of antenatal screening for congenital defects.
Article 13 - The right to education

The legal framework

599. Education constitutes an important value in Israeli society. In the words of the Supreme Court of the State of Israel:

600. The inclusion of “freedom of education” among the values enshrined in Israel's Declaration of Independence serves as further evidence to the importance attributed to education in Israel.

601. The basic components of the right to education - the right of every child to receive free education, and the parents' right to choose the kind of education given to their children, has been guaranteed by one of the first legislative acts of the Knesset, the Compulsory Education Law 1949. According to this law, compulsory education applies to all children between the ages of five (compulsory kindergarten) and 15 (10th grade) inclusive, and it is to be provided free of charge. In addition, the law provides for free education for adolescents aged 16 and 17 (11th-12th grades), as well as for 18-year-olds who did not complete their schooling in 11th grade in accordance with the official curriculum. While the State has sole responsibility for the provision of free education, the maintenance of official educational institutions is the joint responsibility of the State and the municipal education authorities. Parents have the right to choose one of the recognized educational trends of education (State or State-religious) for their children. (See below.) They also have the right to send their children to independent parochial schools, which are not run by the State, but are under its supervision.

602. Important additions to the original version of this law include a prohibition against discrimination on sectarian basis in acceptance, placement, and advancement of pupils as well as a prohibition against punishing pupils for actions or omissions on the part of their parents.

603. Another important law is the State Education Law 1953. This law provides for a six-day school week and determines the content and procedures of State education. State education is defined as education provided by the State on the basis of the curriculum approved and supervised by the Ministry of Education and Culture, without any affiliation to a party, communal body, or any other non-government organization. According to the law, State education is to be based on the values of Israel's culture, the achievements of science, love of the homeland, loyalty to the State and people of Israel, heroism and remembrance of the Holocaust, practice in agricultural work and handicrafts, pioneer training, and building a society on the foundations of freedom, tolerance, mutual assistance and love of mankind.

604. The law establishes two State education trends: State and State-religious education. State-religious education is identical in its structure to the ordinary State education system, but offers a more religious oriented curriculum and usually employs a mostly religious teaching staff. This law enables the Minister of Education, Culture and Sport to approve increasing the existing curriculum by up to 25 per cent, if 75 per cent of the parents request it.

605. Other relevant laws are:

- The Council for Higher Education Law 1958 - which establishes a council responsible for authorizing and accrediting institutions for higher education to award degrees.

- The School Inspection Law 1968 - which regulates the terms for operation of schools existing outside the ordinary school system.

- The Special Education Law 1988 - which establishes a separate education system designed to meet the needs of children with disabilities.

- The Long School Day Law 1990 - which defines the length of the school day.

606. A separate legal regime applies vis--vis pupils with physical or mental disabilities. The Special Education Law 1988 prescribes free education for all such children and adolescents from the ages of five to 18. According to this law by 1998, free special education for disabled individuals will be expanded to include those aged 3 to 21.

607. In 1990, the Knesset enacted the Long School Day Law 1990 designed to guarantee more school hours for all pupils in the K-12 grades. The law stipulates that the duration of the school day shall be eight hours, or less as decided by the Minister of Education and Culture. For budgetary reasons, the law is to be gradually implemented over a period of 10 years.

608. In 1996, the total number of children enrolled in the education system under the supervision of the Ministry of Education, Culture and Sport reached about 1,490,000 - from the pre-primary level to the end of secondary school. Other eligible pupils attend schools supervised by the Ministry of Religious Affairs and by the Ministry of Labor and Social affairs. Combined with the above figures, it is estimated that nearly 100 per cent of the children in the primary school age group attend school, as do over 90 per cent of the adolescents eligible for secondary education.

The constitutional status of the right to education

609. While it is impossible to contest the legal existence of the right to education, the scope of constitutional protection accorded to it has not yet been defined by the courts of Israel. On one occasion, a Supreme Court judge held that the right to education is not a constitutional right, citing the absence of a positive constitutional rule to that effect. However, the President of the Supreme Court in a recent case expressed the opinion that the matter is not yet settled and that the above-mentioned judicial opinion is not binding upon the full court.

Structure of the education system

610. The Israeli education system includes several main levels: pre-primary, primary, secondary, post-secondary, higher education and adult education.

Pre-primary education

611. The pre-primary education system consists of a network of kindergartens. In 1996, the kindergarten system involved 320,000 children ranging from age two to five years, attending municipal, public and private institutions. Younger children normally attend similar day-care institutions, or are put under the supervision of nannies. The goal of early childhood education is to lay an educational foundation, which includes the development of language and thought, learning and creative abilities, social and motor skills.

Primary and secondary education

612. Until 1968, the school system of Israel was divided into primary school (1st-8th grades) and high school (9th-12th grades). In 1968, a reform was decided upon which divided the system into three educational institutions:

(a) Primary school (1st-6th grade);

(b) Lower secondary school (7th-9th grade);

(c) Upper secondary school (10th-12th grade).

613. The purpose of the reform was to improve scholastic achievements and encourage social integration of various sectors of society. At the same time, the period of compulsory education (which used to be 9 years - from compulsory kindergarten to the 8th grade) was extended until the 10th grade (inclusive), bringing the total period compulsory education to 11 years. The reform was, and still is, being implemented slowly, and in 1996 27 per cent of the pupils were still attending schools according to the old system. In upper secondary education, pupils can choose between academic and technological/ vocational tracks. In any case, all tracks are generally available and accessible to all, and are free of charge.

Higher education

614. The higher education system in Israel comprises eight universities (including the Open University in Tel-Aviv). In addition, there are several other non-university institutions of higher education which award Bachelor's degrees in several specific areas only, such as business administration, law, technology, arts and crafts, and teacher training. The system also includes regional colleges which offer academic courses under the auspices and academic responsibility of the universities.

615. A recent feature of the higher education system in Israel is the establishment of general colleges providing a broad spectrum of degree programmes at the undergraduate level. These colleges are being established to meet the increasing demand for higher education which is expected to continue and grow in the first decade of the twenty-first century.

616. Admission to universities and colleges is based upon the high school matriculation certificate and the results of a psychometric examination, without any discrimination on grounds of religion, sex, nationality or any other consideration except academic achievements. Matriculation examinations are administered in Hebrew, Arabic, English, Russian, French and Amharic (Ethiopian), or in other languages if so required. Psychometric examinations are administered in the following languages: Hebrew, Arabic, English, Russian, French or Spanish.

617. University and college education is not free of charge. University tuition is determined in accordance with the decision of a public committee. At present the average undergraduate tuition fees is about 10,000 NIS (approximately $3,000) per annum and may be paid in advance or in instalments. There is a national network of assistance to students in need of aid for socio-economic reasons. This comes in addition to a wide range of public and private foundations that award grants, scholarships and loans. Colleges are considered private institutions and thus their tuition fees are determined by market forces.

Adult education

618. Adult education plays an important role in the educational process. It offers programmes targeted to all population sectors for continuing primary, secondary, pre-academic (university preparatory programmes) and academic education. Furthermore, in Israel, adult education has a special importance since Israel is an immigrant country, absorbing immigration from all parts of the world. Hence, special language and cultural studies are given in new immigrants' schools. All of these activities are carried out by the Ministry of Education, as well as by a wide range of non-governmental organizations and institutions.

619. The objectives of the Ministry of Education, Culture and Sport in the area of adult education are:

- To inculcate the Hebrew language and its culture in new immigrants, and in particular, to divert specific resources for the absorption of Ethiopian immigrants in the area of language, culture and education within Israeli society.

- To narrow the educational gaps within the adult population in Israel; to expand the frameworks of primary and secondary education in all population sectors.

- To expand the knowledge and horizons of the adult student, and to provide him/her with opportunities to enrich the areas of his/her interest, inter alia, through the development of hobbies and creative talents.

- To provide tools for developing skills that will improve adults' functioning in their various roles within the family and community.

620. As a result of the availability of a complementary system of fundamental education, and due to the improved enforcement of the Compulsory Education Law, the number of persons with four or less years of formal education decreased among the non-Jewish population, from 28.9 per cent in 1980 to 15.9 per cent in 1994, while among the Jewish population, the numbers fell respectively from 10.3 per cent to 5.4 per cent.

Organizational difficulties in realizing the right to education

621. While virtually everyone within the eligible age group attends primary school, as far as secondary education is concerned, there is a drop-out problem, especially in the non-Jewish sector.

622. The policy of the Ministry of Education is to make every effort to prevent youth from dropping out and to raise the percentage of those attending school. The stated objective is that every boy and girl, except in extreme cases, shall complete 12 full years of schooling. Schools are obligated by the Ministry's policy to assist and encourage every pupil to continue his/her studies through 12th grade, despite the fact that school attendance is not compulsory over the age of 16.

623. In recent years, preventing pupils from dropping out of formal studies has become one of the primary tasks of the education system. Schools are required to refrain from past practices of abetting unwanted pupils to leave school. Instead, schools should try to increase the pupils' endeavours in their studies and do all that they can to prevent them from dropping out. To further advance this policy goal, financial incentives are given by the Ministry to schools that succeed in reducing drop-out rates.

624. In cases where placement in an alternative educational framework would be for the pupil’s benefit, the school is instructed by the Ministry to assist him/her in finding the most suitable alternative educational framework.

625. One of the main factors which influences the extent of the drop-out phenomenon is the transition between different educational frameworks. The most problematic transitions are:

(a) From primary schools to lower secondary schools/four-year secondary schools;

(b) From lower secondary schools to upper secondary schools;

(c) Between classes in the upper secondary school.

626. One of the stated purposes of the 1968 reform was to postpone the transition from elementary school to high school from 8th to 9th grade.
With regard to higher education, budgetary difficulties prevent at present the granting of free education.

Statistical data

Literacy

627. The following tables introduce, in several disaggregated forms, the figures pertaining to the extent of formal education possessed by the adult population of Israel throughout the years 1961-1995. It divides the population by Jews and non-Jews, sex, age and country of origin. According to this data, in 1995 only 4 per cent of the total Israeli population lacked any formal primary education.
Persons aged 15 and over, by population group, years of schooling,
sex and age a/
Sex
Years of schooling
Total b/
and age
Median
16 +
13 - 15
11 - 12
9 - 10
5 - 8
1 - 4
0
Per centsThousands
Jews
1961
8.4
3.6
6.3
34.6
35.4
7.5
12.6
100.0 1,300.9
1970
9.3
4.9
8.1
39.7
31.7
6.3
9.3
100.0 1,809.6
1975
10.3
7.0
10.7
26.1
18.8
25.5
4.3
7.6
100.0 2,708.2
1980
11.1
8.5
12.3
30.4
17.2
21.3
3.9
6.4
100.0 2,315.8
1985
11.5
10.2
14.2
33.6
16.6
17.3
3.1
5.0
100.0 2,511.3
1990
11.9
12.2
16.0
38.0
13.5
13.7
2.4
4.2
100.0 2,699.3
1993
12.0
13.8
18.5
39.3
13.0
11.6
2.1
3.7
100.0 3,102.9
1994
12.1
14.6
19.3
37.3
12.6
10.8
2.0
3.4
100.0 3,181.1
TOTAL - 1995
- Thousands
501.5662.6 1,198.5 387.5326.462.999.1100.0 3,269.3
- Per cents
12.2
15.520.537.012.010.11.93.1100.0
AGE
15 - 17
11.2
-0.555.142.71.3(0.3)(0.1)100.0 229.3
18 - 24
12.3
3.525.363.25.22.10.30.4100.0 532.1
25 - 34
12.9
22.026.641.06.52.60.40.9100.0 610.4
35 - 44
12.8
23.424.032.512.06.60.41.1100.0 613.6
45 - 54
12.8
24.622.127.111.611.51.1(2.0100.0 452.5
55 - 64
11.6
15.217.624.010.919.65.07.7100.0 335.5
65 +
9.6
9.512.918.712.928.77.010.3100.0 495.9
Men - total
12.3
17.418.838.012.69.71.81.7100.0 1,588.0
15 - 17
11.2
-(0.8)53.244.11.7(0.2)-100.0 118.0
18 - 24
12.2
4.221.464.16.92.6(0.4)(0.4)100.0 271.2
25 - 34
12.9
22.924.740.07.63.6(0.5)0.7100.0 307.9
35 - 44
12.8
25.521.832.512.46.60.40.8100.0 302.2
45 - 54
12.7
27.219.328.412.210.60.81.5100.0 219.8
55 - 64
11.9
19.416.725.210.320.44.43.6100.0 156.6
65 +
10.4
13.113.919.711.528.27.36.3100.0 212.2
Jews
Women - total
12.2
13.6
22.0
36.2
11.4
10.4
2.1
4.3
100.0
1,681.3
15 - 17
11.3
-
(0.2)
57.2
41.2
(1.0)
(0.3)
(0.1)
100.0
111.4
18 - 24
12.4
2.9
29.4
62.0
3.4
1.6
(0.2)
(0.5)
100.0
260.8
25 - 34
13.0
21.1
28.5
42.1
5.3
1.6
(0.4)
1.0
100.0
302.5
35 - 44
12.8
21.4
26.0
32.7
11.5
6.5
(0.4)
1.5
100.0
311.4
45 - 54
12.8
22.1
24.8
26.1
10.9
12.2
1.4
2.5
100.0
232.6
55 - 64
11.3
11.5
18.4
22.9
11.3
19.0
5.5
11.3
100.0
178.8
65 +
9.1
6.8
12.1
17.9
13.9
29.3
6.7
13.3
100.0
283.8
Arabs and others
1961
1.2
1.5
7.6
27.5
13.9
49.5
100.0
136.3
1970
5.0
(0.4)
1.7
13.0
35.1
13.7
36.1
100.0
223.2
1975
6.5
1.4
3.1
9.1
12.6
38.0
12.9
22.9
100.0
279.8
1980
7.5
2.2
5.5
13.5
16.0
33.9
10.0
18.9
100.0
344.5
1985
8.6
2.5
5.9
19.2
19.3
32.0
7.7
13.4
100.0
428.2
1990
9.0
3.0
6.1
23.2
17.4
30.8
6.5
13.0
100.0
502.0
1993
9.7
3.7
7.4
26.4
18.9
26.5
6.2
10.9
100.0
579.2
1994
10.0
4.3
8.4
27.8
18.4
25.1
5.9
10.0
100.0
607.9
TOTAL -
- Thousands
23.9
60.7
177.5
120.1
151.5
36.7
56.2
100.0
533.9
- Per cents
10.2
4.6
9.6
28.1
19.0
24.0
5.8
8.9
100.0
AGE
15 - 17
10.5
-
0.2
38.3
46.5
12.2
(1.0)
(1.8)
100.0
69.8
18 - 24
11.6
2.2
15.8
44.8
18.5
15.5
1.3
1.9
100.0
150.5
25 - 34
11.0
7.5
10.6
32.4
20.6
24.2
2.3
2.4
100.0
167.8
35 - 44
9.0
6.8
10.6
17.4
14.9
37.8
6.5
6.0
100.0
107.5
45 - 54
7.0
5.9
7.5
9.8
9.4
34.3
14.8
18.3
100.0
64.3
55 - 64
4.7
3.8
5.9
6.2
5.1
27.2
21.2
30.6
100.0
40.2
65 +
1.1
(1.5)
(2.4)
6.3
4.6
17.2
15.3
52.7
100.0
33.7
Men - total
10.6
5.9
9.4
30.6
20.6
24.4
5.0
4.1
100.0
315.7
15 - 17
10.5
-
(0.2)
37.1
46.4
13.4
(1.3)
(1.6)
100.0
35.7
18 - 24
11.6
2.2
15.6
45.0
20.3
14.9
(1.1)
(0.9)
100.0
76.4
25 - 34
11.3
9.1
9.3
37.1
21.2
20.8
(1.4)
(1.1)
100.0
83.9
35 - 44
10.2
9.7
11.0
21.8
17.8
33.2
3.4
3.1
100.0
53.2
45 - 54
8.1
8.9
7.9
10.6
12.5
44.3
10.7
5.1
100.0
32.1
55 - 64
6.5
(5.1)
(5.8)
8.8
(6.5)
37.8
23.0
13.0
100.0
19.5
65 +
3.5
(2.5)
(1.5)
(5.6)
(3.6)
27.7
24.5
34.6
100.0
14.9
Women - total
9.7
3.2
9.9
25.7
17.4
23.6
6.6
13.6
100.0
318.2
15 - 17
10.6
-
(0.2)
39.5
46.5
11.1
(0.7)
(2.0)
100.0
34.1
18 - 24
11.6
2.2
15.9
44.7
16.7
16.1
(1.5)
2.9
100.0
74.1
25 - 34
10.6
5.9
11.8
27.8
20.1
27.6
3.2
3.6
100.0
83.9
35 - 44
8.0
3.9
10.2
13.0
(12.0)
42.7
9.5
8.7
100.0
54.3
45 - 54
4.9
(2.9)
7
9.0
6.4
24.2
18.9
31.6
100.0
32.2
55 - 64
1.6
(2.5)
(6.1)
(3.8)
(3.8)
17.2
19.6
47.0
100.0
20.8
65 +
0.7
(0.6)
(3.0)
(6.8)
(5.4)
8.9
8.2
67.1
100.0
18.8
Source: Central Bureau of Statistics.

a/ Till 1985 - Persons aged 14 and over.

b/ Incl. Not known.

Attendance rates in the education system

628. The following tables reveal the gradual increase in the number of pupils in the Israeli education system. The first table shows the current number and rate of attendance in State schools. The second table presents the 1996 figures on the number of primary and secondary education pupils divided into four education sectors (the Jewish, Arab, Bedouin and Druze sectors). The third table reflects the increase in number of students in all educational institutions; the fourth table deals with primary and secondary education only, and illustrates the changes in number of Jewish and non-Jewish pupils in every school grade, throughout the years.

Number of students enrolled in 1996 in the pre-school,
primary and secondary education system and their
percentage in their total age group population:

Pre-school education
Primary education
Secondary education
Kindergartens (ages 2-5)
Primary School (Grades 1-8)
Lower Secondary (Grades 7-9)
Upper Secondary (Grades 9-12)
320,000
690,000
193,000
288,000
(90%)
(96%)
(90%)
    Free and compulsory education
Free education
ages 1-5
ages 5-16
ages 16-18
Source: Ministry of Education, Culture and Sport and the Central Bureau of Statistics.

629. The above figures do not include pupils attending Talmud-Torah (Orthodox Jewish) pre-schools, and institutions under the supervision of the Ministry of Religious Affairs and the Ministry of Labor and Social Affairs (vocational and industrial schools).
Number of pupils in schools by sector and by level, 1996
(thousands of pupils)
Sector
Total
Primary education
Lower secondary education
Upper secondary education
Total
1 171
690
193
288
Jewish
938
540
152
246
Arab
169
108
28
33
Bedouin
36
26
6
4
Druze
28
16
7
5
* The figures in this table do not include kindergartens and higher education.

630. There are approximately 1,170,000 pupils in schools: about 80 per cent of them are in the Jewish sector, about 14 per cent are in the Arab sector, about 3 per cent in the Bedouin sector, and about 2 per cent in the Druze sector.
Pupils in educational institutions

1995/96
1994/95
1979/80
1969/70
1959/60
1948/49
    1. GRAND TOTAL (2 + 12)
1,721,303
1,684,456
1,200,638
823,491
578,003
140,817
    Educational system (3 + 12)
1,656,247
1,592,465
1,156,636
797,191
567,051
140,817
    Other institutions (11)
58,793
56,200
44,000
26,300
10,952
Hebrew education
    2. TOTAL (3 + 11)
1,451,939
1,428,882
1,023,410
711,954
531,923
129,688
    3. EDUCATIONAL SYSTEM
    TOTAL (4 through 10)
1,393,139
1,372,682
979,410
685,654
520,971
129,688
    4. KINDERGARTENS a/
289,100
288,900
246,500
107,668
75,699
25,406
    5. PRIMARY EDUCATION - TOTAL
540,821
540,254
436,387
394,354
375,054
91,133
    Primary schools
528,429
527,328
424,173
375,534
357,644
91,133
    Schools for handicapped children
12,392
12,926
12,214
18,820
17,410
    POST-PRIMARY EDUCATION b/ - TOTAL (5+7)
391,794
384,328
216,602
137,344
55,142
10,218
    6. Intermediate schools
150,804
142,750
72,792
7,908
-
-
    7. Secondary schools - total
240,990
241,578
143,810
129,436
55,142
10,218
    secondary one-track
118,044
123,790
91,138
98,591
    secondary multi-track
122,946
117,788
52,672
30,845
    Type of secondary education
    General
122,283
121,385
61,583
63,731
32,894
7,168
    Continuation classes
9,478
8,918
6,438
8,508
7,065
1,048
    Technological/vocational
102,716
104,436
70,681
49,556
10,167
2,002
    Agricultural
6,513
6,839
5,108
7,641
5,016
    8. POST-SECONDARY INSTITUTIONS
46,514
42,548
25,341
11,894
5,801
1,295
    9. NON UNIVERSITY INSTITUTIONS FOR HIGHER EDUCATION
23,210
19,402
-
-
-
-
    10. UNIVERSITIES
101,700
97,250
54,480
35,374
9,275
1,635
    11. OTHER INSTITUTIONS
58,800
56,200
44,000
26,300
10,952
-
    for primary education c/
26,300
18,800
10,500
-
-
-
    for post-primary education age d/
18,300
25,000
25,700
-
-
-
    for post-secondary education age e/
14,200
12,400
7,800
-
-
-
Arab education
    12. EDUCATIONAL SYSTEM
    - TOTAL (13 through 17)
269,364
255,574
177,225
110,537
46,080
11,129
    13. KINDERGARTEN f/
26,100
26,100
17,344
14,211
7,274
1,214
    14. PRIMARY EDUCATION - TOTAL
152,544
145,416
121,985
85,449
36,729
9,991
    Primary schools
150,083
143,158
121,101
85,094
36,652
9,991
    Schools for handicapped children
2,461
2,258
884
355
77
-
1995/96
1994/95
1979/80
1969/70
1959/60
1948/49
    POST-PRIMARY EDUCATION
    - TOTAL (15 + 16)
88,494
82,312
37,276
10,507
1,958
14
    15. Intermediate schools
44,984
39,699
14,803
2,457
-
-
    16. Secondary schools - total
43,510
42,613
22,473
8,050
1,958
14
    Secondary one-track
15,929
19,277
17,373
1,958
14
    Secondary multi-track
27,581
23,336
5,100
-
-
    TYPE OF SECONDARY EDUCATION
    General
30,124
31,928
19,034
6,198
1,933
14
    Technological/vocational
12,765
10,070
2,645
1,462
-
-
    Agricultural
621
615
794
390
23
-
    17. POST-SECONDARY INSTITUTIONS
    - TOTAL
2,226
1,746
621
370
121
-
    Teacher training colleges
1,598
1,193
485
370
121
-
    Other post-secondary institutions
628
553
136
-
    Source: The Central Bureau of Statistics.
    a/ Incl. an estimate of children aged 6 (about 4,100 in 1995/96) who attend kindergartens.
    b/ Incl. also students in these institutions who study toward a first academic degree.
    c/ Religious schools.
    d/ Pupils in apprentices schools and in industrial schools of the Ministry of Labor and Social Welfare and pupils in "Small Yeshivot".
    e/ "Great Yeshivot".
    f/ Compulsory only.
Pupils in primary and post-primary education, by grade
1995/96
1994/95
1989/90
1979/80
1969/70
1959/60
1948/49
    GRAND TOTAL
1,173,663
1,152,310
1,006,935
812,250
603,716
461,491
108,131
Hebrew education
    VIII - total
76,598
77,780
72,394
54,212
49,570
38,431
7,335
    Thereof: intermediate schools
50,395
49,518
42,562
25,047
2,279
-
-
    Special primary classes
    of unspecified grade
3,287
3,506
3,088
2,013
4,087
3,381
-
    IX - total
75,208
73,902
67,446
51,584
43,926
21,841
4,461
    Thereof: intermediate schools
48,283
44,073
38,318
22,667
-
-
-
    X
72,163
70,814
62,426
44,857
35,402
15,263
2,936
    XI
69,712
70,862
57,654
37,211
28,902
10,707
1,896
    XII - total
67,515
65,544
52,735
31,316
20,503
6,581
925
    Thereof: in secondary (1) general
35,279
34,227
25,956
14,557
13,363
4,256
    XIII
3,468
3,479
2,456
1,155
435
-
-
    XIV
1,207
1,050
740
354
268
-
-
Arab education
    Total
241,038
227,728
207,807
159,261
72,018
31,905
6,780
    I
27,070
23,668
20,611
18,931
11,328
6,219
2,012
    II
23,943
22,585
19,549
18,448
10,927
5,403
1,346
    III
23,142
22,556
19,674
17,879
9,639
5,081
1,179
    IV
23,239
21,611
19,314
17,634
8,972
3,921
959
    V
22,010
22,082
20,303
16,651
8,314
2,860
608
1995/96
1994/95
1989/90
1979/80
1969/70
1959/60
1948/49
    VI
22,524
21,270
20,521
15,065
7,036
2,802
375
    VII - total
21,005
19,738
19,962
14,280
5,981
2,679
231
    Thereof: intermediate schools
16,082
14,220
10,103
5,383
466
-
-
    VIII - total
20,875
19,480
19,556
13,582
4,679
1,888
56
    Thereof: intermediate schools
15,640
13,717
10,208
5,151
321
-
-
    Special primary classes
    of unspecified grade
458
363
20
49
50
23
-
    IX - total
18,818
16,725
16,639
8,748
2,491
465
14
    Thereof: intermediate schools
14,080
11,762
8,617
4,269
-
-
-
    X
14,296
14,687
13,066
7,067
1,224
209
-
    XI
12,211
12,001
9,984
4,633
842
186
-
    XII - total
11,286
10,795
8,550
3,743
535
139
-
    Thereof: in secondary general
8,193
8,100
6,575
3,171
469
139
-
    XIII
161
167
58
-
-
-
-
    Source: The Central Bureau of Statistics.
    (1) Excl. pupils in continuation classes (2,543 in 1994/95 and 2,836 in 1995/96).

Adult education

631. The first of the following tables illustrates the number of adults engaged in elementary/remedial education (primary and secondary), pre-academic and academic special adults' programmes and immigrant absorption programmes. The second table shows the annual growth in the number of adults who complete their primary and secondary education.
Participation in adult education
Pre-Academic Preparatory ProgrammesImmigrant Absorption ProgrammesPrimary EducationSecondary EducationPopular Universities
1990
6 001
1991
6 784
138,152
19,276
1992
7 669
116,985
6,300
5,800
20,190
1993
7 789
77,871
6,950
6,300
23,368
1994
7 807
64,304
7,900
8,600
28,684
1995
8 588
67,304
9,500
10,500
31,349
1996 (forecast)
68,000
11,000
Source: Central Bureau of Statistics and the Ministry of Education, Culture and Sport.

632. The increase in number of participants in elementary Hebrew language class programmes during the early 1990s is due to the dramatic influx of immigrants from the former Soviet Union to Israel in that period.

Source: Ministry of Education, Culture and Sport.

Higher Education

633. The following tables show the number of students in higher education institutions, and their disaggregation by degree, field study, sex, age, population group and origin.
Number of Students in Institutions of Higher Education
1990
1994
1995
1996
1997
    Total Students
76,000
108,300
116,000
123,000
135,000
    Students in Colleges
8,300
16,800
19,400
28,000
36,500
    Students in Universities
67,700
91,500
96,600
95,000
98,500
Source: Central Bureau of Statistics.

634. By the year 2000, an increase of 16 per cent over 1995 is expected in the number of students in institutions of higher education. Most of the increase is expected to be in enrolment to colleges.

E/1990/5/Add.39
page 1 E/1990/5/Add.39
page 1
Students in universities, by degree, field of study, sex, age, group and origin
          Per cents
        1992/93
Engineering and architecture
Agricultur e
Sciences and mathematics
Medicine a/
Law
Social sciences
Humanities
Total
1989/90
1984/85
1974/75
    FIRST DEGREE - TOTAL
100.0
100.0
100.0
100.0
100.0
100.0
100.0
100.0
100.0
100.0
100.0
    Thereof: women
18.2
41.2
44.3
71.4
46.6
55.9
74.0
54.0
51.3
48.3
44.8
    Age
    Up to 19
12.4
2.3
13.0
8.4
7.2
4.6
5.4
7.6
7.3
6.4
6.9
    20 - 21
17.4
7.5
24.3
20.4
19.6
17.4
18.7
19.0
17.6
16.6
23.5
    22 - 24
36.1
44.8
43.1
45.6
44.2
46.4
39.5
42.2
39.8
37.2
41.3
    25 - 29
30.4
39.5
17.3
17.5
23.7
22.0
20.9
22.2
24.5
24.7
18.2
    30 - 34
2.8
4.6
1.6
3.0
2.6
3.8
5.3
3.7
5.1
7.2
4.0
    35 +
0.8
1.3
0.7
5.0
2.4
5.9
10.1
5.3
5.7
7.9
6.0
    Population group
    Jews
95.1
98.3
91.8
92.5
94.0
96.1
91.9
93.8
93.3
92.1
96.5
    Arabs & Others
4.9
1.7
8.2
7.5
8.0
3.9
8.1
6.2
6.7
7.9
3.5
    ORIGIN (OF JEWS) - TOTAL
100.0
100.0
100.0
100.0
100.0
100.0
100.0
100.0
100.0
100.0
100.0
    Israel
31.5
43.7
30.0
31.5
39.1
32.6
29.0
31.5
28.8
19.2
7.9
    Asia - Africa
23.0
17.4
20.7
20.1
19.5
28..4
31.8
26.3
27.9
27.1
18.3
    Europe - America
45.5
38.9
49.3
48.4
41.4
39.0
39.2
42.3
43.3
53.7
73.8
    SECOND DEGREE - TOTAL
100.0
100.0
100.0
100.0
100.0
100.0
100.0
100.0
100.0
100.0
100.0
    Thereof: women
21.7
46.8
48.7
49.8
38.4
52.9
73.7
53.5
50.3
46.8
35.2
    Age
    Up to 24
11.611.928.925.615.49.26.613.213.612.422.8
    25 - 29
51.751.353.246.546.848.228.644.144.1 42.052.2
    30 - 34
22.316.412.513.921.419.617.117.719.421.811.2
    35 - 44
12.016.74.610.513.417.327.817.118.316.7
    45 +
2.33.80.83.53.05.619.97.94.67.113.8
    Population group
    Jews
98.297.596.994.697.098.496.297.296.796.898.7
    Arabs & Others
1.82.53.15.43.01.63.82.83.33.21.3
(continued)
        1992/93
E/1990/5/Add.39
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E/1990/5/Add.39
page 1
635. The next table illustrates the increase over time in the percentage of Israelis with higher education.

Persons with higher education among the general population (13 years or more of schooling)



Source: Central Bureau of Statistics.

636. The number of persons with higher education among the Jewish population grew between 1980 and 1995 by about 63 per cent (from 20.8 per cent to 33.9 per cent); among the non-Jewish population, the number of persons with higher education grew about 65 per cent (from 7.7 per cent to 12.7 per cent).

Drop-out rates

637. The following data shows the scope of the problem of drop-outs and the continuing trend of reduction in the size of this phenomenon:

Number of children and youth not attending school
(Ages 6-17)
Children and youth

1992
1993
1994
1995
    Total
52 260
42 300
37 000
30 000

Percentage of children and youth not attending school

1992
1993
1994
1995
    Percentage
4.5%
3.6%
3.1%
2.5%
Source: Ministry of Education, Culture and Sport, based on Central Bureau of Statistics Data.
Attendance of 14-17 year olds in the Jewish education system - percentages

1980
1985
1990
1994
    Total
79.5
86.9
90.5
94.4
    Boys
72.9
80.7
85.5
90.9
    Girls
86.5
93.7
95.7
98.1

14-17 year olds in Arab education - percentages

1980
1985
1990
1994
    Total
51.3
62.1
62.8
66.4
    Boys
58.0
65.6
66.4
65.2
    Girls
44.0
58.1
58.9
67.5

Source: Central Bureau of Statistics.

* These figures relate only to pupils in institutions under the supervision of the Ministry of Education. If data from the Ministry of Labor and Social Affairs and the Ministry of Religious Affairs are added, the attendance rates will be higher.

Annual drop-out rates for pupils in upper secondary education


Source: Central Bureau of Statistics.
E/1990/5/Add.39
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E/1990/5/Add.39
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Pupils in grades IX-XII by grade and school leaving
1994/95-1995/96
1993/94-1994/951991/92-1992/93
IX-XII
IX-XIIX-XIIX-XI
Per cent
    Absolute numbers
Per centAbsolute numbersPer centAbsolute numbersPer centAbsolute numbers
    GRAND TOTAL
    100.0
    290 578
    100.0212 716100.0210 834100.0207 429
    Did not leave school
    91.5
    265 925
    88.6188 42887.3183 98586.6179 634
    Left school - total
    8.5
    24 653
    11.424 28812.826 84913.427 795
    Left the educational system (dropped out)
    5.2
    14 574
    7.114 3848.016 8017.615 743
    Dropped out
    at the end of school year
    3.6
    10 553
    5.0 10 5535.912 3425.812 048
    during the school year
    1.4
    4 021
    1.83 8312.14 4591.83 695
    Left for another school
    3.5
    10 079
    4.79 9044.810 0485.812 052
Hebrew education
    TOTAL
    100.0
    248 917
    100.0181 575100.0179 415100.0178 122
    Did not leave school
    91.7
    228 210
    88.8161 16287.7157 43287.2155 264
    Left school - total
    8.3
    20 707
    11.220 41312.221 98312.822 858
    Left the educational system (dropped out)
    4.7
    11 137
    6.411 0126.912 3976.711 926
    Dropped out
    at the end of school year
    3.3
    8 086
    4.58 0865.08 9375.08 938
    during the school year
    1.2
    3 051
    1.62 9261.93 4601.72 988
    Left for another school
    3.8
    9 570
    5.29 4015.39 5866.110 932
Arab education
    TOTAL
    100.0
    41 661
    100.031 141100.031 419100.029 307
    Did not leave school
    90.5
    37 715
    87.627 26884.526 55383.224 370
    Left school - total
    9.5
    3 945
    12.43 87515.54 86616.84 937
    Left the educational system (dropped out)
    8.3
    3 437
    11.03 37214.04 40413.03 817
    Dropped out
    at the end of school year
    5.9
    2 467
    7.92 46710.83 40510.83 110
    during the school year
    2.3
    970
    2.99053.29992.4707
    Left for another school
    1.2
    509
    1.65031.54623.81 120

Source: Central Bureau of Statistics.
E/1990/5/Add.39
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E/1990/5/Add.39
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638. The total effect of these figures shows a clear trend of constant increase in the percentage of adolescent pupils who remain in school and a matching decrease in drop-out rates. This trend can be seen both in Jewish and Arab education sectors, and among both boys and girls. Since the 1990s, in both Jewish and Arab education sectors, the percentage of attendance among female pupils has been higher than that of male pupils every year.

Graduating rates at all levels

639. The following tables show the percentage of pupils entitled to matriculation certificates upon their graduation from high school and the ratio between those examinees who meet the requirements for matriculation certificate and those who do not (disaggregated into Jews and non-Jews, sex and type of school):



Percentage of matriculation candidates (age 17 in the population)




Source: Ministry of Education, Culture and Sport.



Source: Ministry of Education, Culture and Sport,
Economics and Statistics Division Examination Information
Centre of the Examinations Division and the Senior Division
of Information System.

* Age 17 in the population.



640. The graph shows that over the years there has been an increase in the percentage of those who are entitled to matriculation certificates in the age group, primarily in recent years.
Examinees in matriculation exams by qualification for certificate and various characteristics

EXAMINEES IN MATRICULATION EXAMS BY QUALIFICATION
FOR CERTIFICATE AND VARIOUS CHARACTERISTICS
Examinees
Not entitledEntitledTotalNot entitledEntitledTotal
Per centAbsolute numbers
        Grand total
        198739.660.4100.014 91722 74037 657
        199136.064.0100.016 64829 57746 225
        199237.562.5100.018 64031 00549 645
        199339.960.1100.022 07333 20055 273
        199441.158.9100.024 95435 76560 719
        199534.165.9100.019 972 38 566 a/ 58 538
        Hebrew education
        198737.262.8100.012 09420 38932 483
        199132.767.3100.012 79226 36239 154
        199235.364.7100.015 03327 60542 638
        199337.362.7100.017 65729 66847 325
        199438.561.5100.020 08832 13552 223
        199531.168.9100.015 47734 33149 808
        Track
        General25.474.6100.09 16226 85236 014
        Technological45.854.2100.0 6 315 b/ 7 47913 794
        Sex c/
        Boys33.166.9100.07 51715 19622 713
        Girls29.470.6100.07 87718 95726 834
        Origin c/
        Israel28.471.6100.05 31713 43318 750
        Asia-Africa39.460.6100.06 0949 35615 450
        Europe-America25.674.4100.03 81811 10514 923
        Arab education
        198754.645.4100.02 8232 3515 174
        199154.545.5100.03 8563 2157 071
        199251.548.5100.03 6073 4007 007
        199355.644.4100.04 4163 5327 948
        199457.142.9100.04 8463 6408 486
        199551.648.5100.04 4954 2358 730
        Track
        General47.952.1100.03 4453 7547 199
        Technological68.631.4100.0 1 050 d/4811 531
        Sex e/2 204
        Boys53.646.4100.02 2891 9084 112
        Girls49.650.4100.02 3274 616
        Religion e/3 407
        Muslims55.045.0100.04872 7876 194
        Christians38.361.7100.05917841 271
        Druzi47.552.5100.06521 243

Source: Central Bureau of Statistics.
a/ In addition in 1995, 1,456 were entitled to external matriculation certificates.
b/ In the technological track 2,392 examinees received a technological certificate without a matriculation certificate.
c/ The total only include a number of examinees whose sex and/or origin are not known.
d/ In the technological track 291 examinees received a technological certificate without a matriculation certificate.
e/ The total only includes a number of examinees whose sex and/or religion are not known.

641. The next tables include statistics on graduating students in Israel's universities, in the Open University (a distance-learning institution), non-university high education institutions and teachers' training colleges:

RECIPIENTS OF DEGREES FROM UNIVERSITIES, BY DEGREE, FIELD OF STUDY AND INSTITUTION
Annual per cent change (1)
        1994/951989/901979/801994/951993/941989/901979/801969/70
        1989/901979/801970/71
        All degrees recipients
        TOTAL
        - Absolute numbers5.74.05.318 33916 13913 9159 3715 566
        - Per cent100.0100.0100.0100.0100.0
        Thereof: women7.45.27.154.754.650.545.138.1
        Degree
        First degree5.25.25.271.771.873.272.073.0
        Second degree6.25.47.420.519.720.017.614.5
        Third degree5.21.84.73.23.43.24.04.3
        Diploma11.7-2.22.84.65.13.56.48.2


Source:  Central Bureau of Statistics.


RECIPIENTS OF FIRST DEGREE FROM THE OPEN UNIVERSITY
BY SEX AND FIELD BY SEX AND OF STUDY
1994/951993/941992/931991/921990/911989/901988/891987/881984/851982/83
TOTAL
        65061540535033930428119410141
Men
        270275185196178154153906428
Women
        3803402201541611501281043713


Source:  Central Bureau of Statistics.

        FIRST DEGREE STUDENTS IN HIGHER NON-UNIVERSITY INSTITUTIONS FOR
        HIGHER EDUCATION BY FIELD OF STUDY, YEAR OF STUDY AND SEX
Field of study1994/951993/941990/911989/901988/891986/871984/851979/80
        TOTAL3 4762 6581 2331 055953662457197
        Technology sciences a/14112017814011212012730
        Economics and business administration (1)584657100981246150-
        Arts and design a/31830122216220517014192
        Law253171------
        Teaching - total a/2 1771 40973365551231113975
        Kindergarten3314------
        For grades I-II3312068269738--
        For grades III-VI5623399667409--
        For grades VII-X6854552162012081278575
        For all grades b/47835329927416012918-
        Informal education55424044313836-

Source: Central Bureau of Statistics.

a/ See introduction.

b/ Including physical education, music and special education.

642. The following numbers relate to graduates receiving B.Ed. Degrees at teacher's training colleges:

1980 75 graduates

1983 127 graduates

1987 311 graduates

1990 655 graduates

1993 1,026 graduates

1994 1,409 graduates

Education budgets

643. As the following data illustrate, the amount of government resources spent on education is gradually increasing in absolute terms (exceeding the inflation rate in Israel), in expenditure per pupil, and as a percentage of the total State budget and the GNP:

National expenditure on education, by type of expenditure and main services (1971-1994)

    Grand total at current prices as per cent of GNP
Grand total
    1970/71
    7.4
    4 017
    1971/72
    7.7
    4 523
    1972/73
    7.5
    4 860
    1973/74
    8.1
    5 198
    1974/75
    7.8
    5 450
    (1) 1974/75
    8.4
    5 844
    1975/76
    8.0
    5 873
    1976/77
    8.2
    5 773
    1977/78
    8.5
    5 936
    1978/79
    8.8
    6 198
    1979/80
    8.6
    6 279
    1980/81
    8.1
    6 171
    1981/82
    8.1
    6 336
    1982/83
    8.3
    6 493
    1983/84
    8.0
    6 641
    1984/85
    8.4
    6 653
    (1) 1984/85
    9.2
    7 661
    1985/86
    8.2
    7 604
    1986/87
    8.4
    7 830
    1987/88
    8.4
    8 094
    1988/89
    8.6
    8 304
    1989/90
    8.5
    8 391
    1990/91
    8.6
    8 820
Calendar years
1990
    8.5
    8 770
1991
    8.5
    9 321
1992
    8.6
    9 960
1993
    8.9
    10 492
1994
    9.2
    11 060


Source: Central Bureau of Statistics.National expenditure on education of the Ministry of Education, Culture and Sport, 1994-1996


Year Fixed amount (1995) Actual amount

1994 11.6 billion NIS 10.6 billion NIS
1995 13.8 billion NIS 13.8 billion NIS
1996 15.1 billion NIS 16.4 billion NIS


After discarding the effects of inflation.

Source: Ministry of Education, Culture and Sport.



644. The real increase in the education budget between 1994-1996 was 30 per cent; the nominal increase was 55 per cent.




Note: 1995-1996 statistics are listed as estimates.






Source: Ministry of Finance.

645. This table clearly establishes a gradual increase since 1990 in the portion of the total budget allocated to education expenditures. The 1997 government expenditure on education represents 10 per cent of the overall government expenditures.


Source: Central Bureau of Statistics.
National Expenditure
Public Expenditure


Construction of new schools

646. In recent years, the Ministry of Education, Culture and Sport has allocated special budgets for building new schools, and expanding and renovating existing ones. In 1996, NIS 234 million ($66.8 million) were allocated for the construction of new schools and classrooms, 1,743 of which were built that year. The need for such intensive construction originates from absorbing the children of new immigrants into the education system, natural population increase, and the establishment of new neighbourhoods throughout the country.

647. In addition, in 1996, NIS 199 million ($56.8 million) were allocated for the continued construction of 1,168 classrooms; NIS 96 million ($27.4 million) were allocated for the renovation of school buildings (over 200 schools were renovated in 1996); NIS 28 million ($8 million) were allocated for the construction of school gyms; additional NIS 15 million ($4.3 million) were allocated for equipping new classrooms; NIS 16 million ($4.6 million) were allocated for the expansion of regional colleges; and NIS 21 million ($6 million) for fencing and protection of education institutions.

648. In 1996, priority in construction was accorded to confrontation-line localities (settlements near the borders), localities included in supportive-intervention programmes (mainly disadvantaged areas), and cities with a mixed population - especially Jerusalem.

649. The Vicinity of Schools: Under the Compulsory Education Law, the State must ensure that schooling facilities are available to students within their municipal district, and pupils must enrol in a recognized school in that same district. The State Education Law adds a further requirement - that enrolment be made at a school close to the pupil's residence.

650. Due to Israel's small size, an efficient transportation system and the large number and dispersion of schools, education institutions are available, by and large, to everyone within a relatively close vicinity, even in the more rural areas of the country.

Schooling schedules

651. In recent years, the Ministry of Education, Culture and Sport has taken upon itself to establish an outline programme regulating the schooling schedules of the various components of the education system. An outline programme has been promulgated and implemented in kindergartens and secondary schools (lower and upper). In primary education, however, the organization of studies is in a transitional stage and has not yet been completed.

652. The following table relates to Programmes for Kindergartens:

Elements
Daily time (in minutes) in
accordance with age
2
-
6
      Acquisition and consolidation of life skills and habits (including personal hygiene, care of clothes, and meals)
90-
    45
      Free Play
90
-
60
      Expression through materials
45
-
60
      Planned social activity (free movement, using playground apparatus and movement lessons)
45
-
45
Directed learning activity
30
-
60
      Total
330
(5.5 hours)
-
-
330
(5.5 hours)

Source: Ministry of Education, Culture and Sport.

653. The programme contains six elements which are essential foundations in the work of all kindergartens. Their organization is flexible and adapted to the shared and differing needs of each child.

Primary education

654. The primary education system is currently in a transitional stage, in preparation for a reorganization of the structure of studies in primary schools. The main feature of the proposed change is striking a balance between the previously dominant approach, according to which a single discipline of teaching subjects in conformity with a predetermined schedule of hours is enforced, and a modern inter-disciplinary approach to teaching. According to the latter approach, schools enjoy a greater degree of discretion and the Ministry's role is limited to setting guidelines.

655. It is the current policy of the Ministry of Education, Culture and Sport to encourage school autonomy in establishing the schedule of hours and deciding the curriculum. However, such autonomy is subject to the requirements of the State Education Law 1953 (which mandates a six day school week, unless the Minister of Education determines otherwise), and of the Long School Day Law 1990 (which mandates an eight-hour school day, unless the Minister of Education determines otherwise). Furthermore, Ministry-issued guidelines as to the percentage of hours given to certain topics (e.g., mathematics, language skills, science, human studies, etc.) must be followed.

656. It is estimated that at present only about a third of the primary schools in Israel enjoy an autonomy along the above described lines.

Secondary education

657. The following tables are the official schedule of hours to be followed by the secondary schools in Israel, divided into lower and upper secondary schools and by education sector. The total numbers of hours appearing in these tables under the term “Weekly hours” is the aggregate number of standard hours throughout all grades represented in each schedule.
Schedule of hours in Lower Secondary School
in Hebrew education (7th-9th grades)
    Subjects/Fields
    Weekly hours: State education
    Weekly hours: State religious education
    Hebrew
12
11
    English
11
11
    Arabic/French
9
9
    Mathematics
14
14
    Science and technology
18
15 a/
    Bible
14
12
    Oral Law and Judaism
12-14
    History, Geography, humanistic and social studies
16
12
Arts
4
3
    Education and civics (individual and society)
7
7
    Physical education
6
3-5
    TOTAL
111
111
    Yeshiva and ulpana b/ track: Advanced Oral Law and elective programmes
(2 additional weekly hours)
Schedule of hours in Lower Secondary School in Arab and Druze education (7th-9th grades)
Subjects/Fields
Weekly hours
    Arabic
15
    English
12
    Hebrew
12
    Mathematics
14
    Science and technology
18
    Arab culture or Islam or Christianity or Druze heritage
7
History, geography, humanistic and social studies
16
    Arts
4
    Education and civics (individual and society)
7
    Physical education
6
    TOTAL
111
Source: Ministry of Education, Culture and Sport.
Schedule of hours in Upper Secondary School in Jewish education (10th-12th grades)
Field
Number of hours per pupil
Hebrew education
State education
State religious education
    Hebrew
12
11
    English a/
9-11
9-11
    Arabic a/
3
3
    Mathematics
9
9
    Natural Sciences/technology b/
8
8
    Bible and Jewish Studies
9
20-26
    History, Geography, humanistic and social studies
8
8
Elective subject
6
6
    Education and civics
7
7
    Essay-writing workshop c/
2
2
    Physical education
6
6
    Basket of hours for intensive and expanded study
26.28
32.34
16-24
24-32
TOTAL
107 c/
113
113
121
General
Technology
General
Technology
Source: Ministry of Education, Culture and Sport

a/ French may be substituted for English as the first foreign language or for Arabic as a second foreign language. Children born abroad may substitute their mother tongue as the second foreign language.

b/ In rural schools, the study of “life and agricultural sciences” is compulsory.

c/ In the technological track, the hours allotted for the composition workshop may be used for the study of technological subjects.

Schedule of hours in Upper Secondary School in Arab
and Druze education (10th-12th grades)

Field
Number of hours per pupil
      Arabic
12
English
9-11
      Hebrew
9
      Mathematics
9
      Natural sciences/technology
8
      Arab culture or Islam or Christianity of Druze heritage
3-4
      History, humanities and social studies
8
      Elective subject
6
      Education and citizenship
7
      Essay-writing workshop a/
2
      Physical education
6
      Basket of hours for intensive and expanded study
25-28
31-34
      TOTAL
107
133
General
Technology

a/ In the technological track, the hours allocated to the composition workshop may be used for the study of technological subjects.


Equal educational opportunities

Ratio of males to females in the education system

658. Whereas in primary education, there is almost universal attendance by the relevant age group, in secondary education, there is a problem of drop-outs. Dropping out is more common with boys, and consequently, the ratio of males to females in secondary education tilts slightly in favour of the latter. The percentage of entitlement to matriculation certificate is also higher amongst female pupils than male pupils (52 per cent in comparison with 41 per cent in 1994/5).
Pupils in schools by type of school, age and sex
Rates per 1000 in respective group of population
Age
17161514
14-17
6-13
Girls
BoysTotal
    1993/94
799865921945
    920
856885956
Hebrew education
    1969/70
438603742910
    707
631668984
    1979/80
625743856946
    865
729795967
    1989/90
827884929966
    957
855905958
    1993/94
866930978998
    981
909944955
    1994/95 Total
885943995
    996
926959955
    Primary education
7101365
    23
2825813
    Post-primary education
    Intermediate schools
- - 124582
    177
180178138
    Secondary schools - total
878933873348
    796
7187564
    General (2)
463484458182
    459
3363963
    Technological/vocational and agricultural
415449415166
    337
3823601
Arab education
    1993/94
525603705742
    675
652664958
    1994/95 Total
    592
657673958
    Primary education
- - - -
    19
2220821
    Post-primary education
    Intermediate schools
- - 81559
    153
163158136
    Secondary schools - total
544590643196
    520
4724951
    General (2)
402431473176
    404
3413721
    Technological/vocational and agricultural
14215917020
    115
131123-

Source:  Central Bureau of Statistics.

659. In institutions of higher education, there are, today, more women than men studying for their Bachelor's and Master's degrees.  However, a greater proportion of men is enrolled in doctoral programmes.
Students in post-secondary non-university institutions
by field of study, sex and age a/
Year of study, sex and age
Field of study
Other
Arts, design and architect ure
Clerical work, law, administrati on,
economics etc.
Paramedica l occupation s
Qualifie d
nurses
Practical
engineerin g,
technical
work etc.
Teacher
training
Total
    1970/71
1 2658761 3646001,1774 7935 44215 517
    1974/75
1 8011 8352 3536071 2197 35511 05726 227
    1979/80
1 7371 3752 1764751 9617 85711 77027 351
    1984/85
8741 0032 3847481 56713 28811 87231 736
    1989/90
8071 5031 9447421 27310 7478 29125 307
    1992/93
1 2191 2484 7148121 36314 53811 68935 583
    1994/95
1 3394 5416 9057381 33418 2459 44642 548
    1995/96
1 1795 1977 7206211 66819 31010 81946 514
    GRAND TOTAL
    Hebrew education -total
1 1635 1971 6876211 66818 66110 31245 309
    Year of study
    I
712 9565 71330887311 2513 35225 164
    II
4261 5651 7171564806 6453 17314 162
    III
265142571162445773 0534 787
    IV
- 162 - 41711887341 196
    Sex
    Men
5211 2963 62823817013 4061 95021 209
    Women
6423 9014 0593831 4985 2558 36224 100
    Age
    Up to 24
4982 6162 99540985113 0927 58428 045
    25-29
2481 8062 3881223753 6131 3219 873
    30 and over
4177752 304904421 9561 4077 391
    Arab education
16 - 33 - - 6495071 205

Source: Central Bureau of Statistics.

a/ Excl. students studying towards a first degree in non-university institutions for higher education.

Weak and disadvantaged population groups

660. Since the education laws equally apply to every child and adolescent in Israel, without any discrimination, the right to education belongs to everyone. Furthermore, under Israeli administrative law the education authorities (as any other governmental authority) may not adopt discriminatory policies. However, in practice, certain population groups are found to be in a disadvantageous position and special efforts have been made by the authorities to foster and support their education.

General programmes of assistance

661. The activities of the Ministry of Education, Culture and Sport, directed to help pupils of all sectors of the population, focus upon two target groups: “pupils with potential” - 12th grade students who complete their education without a matriculation certificate but have the potential to achieve one; and “pupils at risk” - pupils who might drop out, have done so already, or are exposed to other risks.

662. The following programmes are employed to help “pupils with a potential”:

(a) Maavar (“Moving on”)

This is a programme designed to promote pupils to go from partial to full matriculation. It offers classes in the framework of an upper-secondary school. In 1996, approximately 10,000 pupils attended this programme.

(b) Tahal (“Second Chance”)

This matriculation completion programme is offered to pupils who attended the 12th grade in a matriculation track, but failed to take or pass between one and three different curriculum subjects necessary for the completion their matriculation certificate. Pupils are given intensive courses on different curriculum subjects (and receive a deferment of their military service). In 1996, about 2,530 pupils participated in this programme.

(c) Pre-academic preparatory programmes

This track provides demobilized soldiers another chance to complete their matriculation certificates and helps them improve their chances of admission into higher education institutions. About 10,000 pupils studied in such programmes in 1996.

(d) Michael (“Utilizing Personal Skills for Excellence”)

This programme offers assistance to 10th and 11th grade pupils in development towns (often areas with difficult socio-economic conditions), and other disadvantaged areas in studying for the matriculation examinations. In 1996, approximately 6,000 pupils attended this programme.



Source: Ministry of Education, Culture and Sport.


663. The following programmes and measures are employed to help “pupils at risk”:

(a) Programmes of preventive intervention and assistance intended to combat the phenomenon of dropping-out have been operating in 1996 in 110 schools.

(b) Truant officers locate and work with drop-outs. In 1996, 11,000 drop-outs were reached by these activities.

(c) Special activities have been undertaken to help reintegration of drop-outs in schools.

(d) “Children's home” programmes and afternoon-care centres give pupils a place to stay after school hours, until the evening. In 1996 about 500 such programmes and centres were serving approximately 8,000 children.

(e) Differential benefits programme - schools who are successful in preventing drop-outs and increasing the number of pupils taking the matriculation exams and the number of pupils who are eventually entitled to receive matriculation certificates receive special financial benefits from the Ministry of Education, Culture and Sport.



Source:  Ministry of Education, Culture and Sport.
Expansion of after-school “children's home” programmes
and day-care centres





Source:  Ministry of Education, Culture and Sport.

Specific programmes of assistance offered to specified population
groups


664. Children with learning disabilities: As mentioned above, a special education system exists alongside the regular system, which is available for pupils aged 3-21. In recent years there has been an increase in the resources allocated to special education and in the 1996 budget the amount reached a record NIS 1.2 billion ($34.3 million). It thus became possible to extend the application of the law to age groups 3-5 and 18-21 prior to the originally estimated date. Furthermore, pupils with serious disabilities were provided with longer school days and classes during ordinary school vacations.

665. It is however the goal of the Ministry of Education, Culture and Sport to encourage the integration of children with mild disabilities into the ordinary school system. Therefore, a special programme was initiated to teach teachers how to help pupils with disabilities and how to create a tolerant atmosphere towards them among the ordinary pupils. Moreover, a special differentiated curriculum is being developed to accommodate the needs of such disabled pupils.

666. In 1996, there were approximately 37,000 pupils aged 3-21 years in the various special education frameworks. In addition, about 40,000 more pupils were integrated in the regular school system, but received special assistance from special education resources. It should be noted that the percentage of all pupils in Israel enrolled in special education has declined in the last 10 years.

Source: Ministry of Education, Culture and Sport. Arab and Druze Sectors

667. The Arab and Druze pupils have achieved, on average, lower scores on past national assessment tests than their Jewish counterparts. Similarly, drop-out rates are higher in these sectors, and matriculation entitlement percentage is lower. This gap in educational achievements is attributed to inadequate channelling of resources to these sectors in the past, to socio-economic problems, and inferior infrastructure. Furthermore, teaching hours used to be fewer in these sectors in comparison with the Jewish sector, and teachers used to be less well-trained.

668. Determined to close this gap, the Ministry of Education in 1991 embarked on a five-year programme intended to equalize the educational and budgetary standards of these sectors to that of the Jewish education sector.

The special measures taken under the programme were as follows:

- Construction of classrooms;

- Adding classroom hours;

- Teacher training and in-service teacher training;

- Pedagogic assistance for teachers - teacher-trainers and pedagogic centres;

- Developing curricula and textbooks, and producing programmes for educational television;

- Nurturing gifted pupils

- Expanding the truant officers scheme and the psychological counselling and guidance services;

- Expanding activities to prevent dropping out;

- Significant expansion of special education;

- Expanding informal education

- Increasing budgets for culture and sport.

669. The five-year programme has been successful in narrowing the gaps between the Arab and Druze and the Jewish education systems, but has failed to close the gap altogether. It should be noted, however, that in one area -academization of teaching staff - the achievements in the Arab sector in upper secondary education have recently surpassed those of the Jewish sector.



























Source: Ministry of Education, Culture and Sport.

























Source: Ministry of Education, Culture and Sport.

New immigrants
670. Being an immigrant absorbing society, Israel's educational system faces the challenge of integrating immigrant pupils who do not know the language, and come from varying educational and cultural backgrounds. The education system offers such pupils additional teaching hours for up to the first three years (sometimes in their native language), and undertakes programmes to smooth the process of their integration.

671. In many cases, due to a lack of previous formal education, immigrants from Ethiopia face unique problems in their absorption in the education system. In order to address this special problem, the Ministry of Education, Culture and Sport has established a special steering committee to focus on the integration of Ethiopian immigrant pupils. Half of the members of the steering committee are themselves Ethiopian immigrants.

672. Measures already taken by the Ministry in order to facilitate the integration of Ethiopian immigrants include supplementary after-school programmes and the allotment of additional teaching hours throughout their entire education. Special attention has been given to the problem of drop-outs among Ethiopian immigrants. The policies and programmes that have been implemented resulted in considerable success.
Specially targeted action
673. The Ministry of Education, Culture and Sport has identified over 30 municipalities facing special problems in terms of educational achievements, and has developed special programmes involving the participation of the local communities to improve the situation in those targeted towns and villages. The list of targeted municipalities includes Jewish, Arab, Druze, Bedouin and mixed settlements.

674. The following list relates to the geographical Dispersion of Targeted Localities:

    Jerusalem
    Beit Shemesh
    Maale Adumim
    Neve Yaakov
    Pisgat Zeev
    Haifa
    Or Akiva
    Gissar A-Zarka
    Daliyat El-Carmel
    Ussifiya
    Tirat HaCarmel
    Kiryat Yam
    South
    Ofakim
    Beersheva
    Yeroham
    Mizpe Ramon
    Netivot
    Kiryat Gat
    Tel Sheva
    North
    Bir El-Maksur
    Beit Jan
    Beit Shean
    Hazor Haglilit
    Tiberias
    Yokneam
    Maale Yosef
    Marom Hagalil
    Upper Nazareth
    Acre
    Afula
    Kiyat Shemona
    Shlome
    Centre/Tel Aviv
    Or yehuda
    Bat Yam
    Yehud
    Rosh HaAyim
    Ramla/Lod
Source: Ministry of Education, Culture and Sport.
Language facilities

675. The language used in the school system and teacher's training is either Hebrew (Jewish sector) or Arabic (Arab and Druze sectors). Some schools have started to offer special language where immigrant pupils are taught some of their courses in their native language.

676. In Arabic-speaking schools, pupils learn Hebrew and English as second and third languages, whereas in Hebrew-speaking schools, English and Arabic are taught as foreign languages. In some schools French is taught as a second language (instead of English or Arabic), and since 1997 other languages, such as Russian were introduced into the elective curriculum.

677. Adult new immigrants are offered basic Hebrew-language classes in new immigrant’s schools especially created to teach elementary language skills. In 1996, 68,000 persons attended schools.

Conditions of teaching staff

678. There are approximately 80,000 full-time teachers in all levels of the Israeli primary and secondary system. The following table demonstrates their distribution to sectors and school levels:

Teaching posts (full-time) in schools, 1996

Total
Hebrew education
Arab education
    Total
79 010
66 050
12 960
    Primary Education
39 920
32 600
7 320
    Lower Secondary
14 380
11 740
2 640
    Upper Secondary
24 710
21710
3 000

















Source: Ministry of Education, Culture and Sport.


679. In addition there are about 22,000 part-time teachers in primary and secondary schools, and 50,000 teachers in kindergartens and other educational frameworks. It is the policy of the Ministry of Education, Culture and Sport to support the academization of teachers. Most teacher trainees now study toward an academic degree (B.Ed. or B.A.), and practising teachers are encouraged to get such a degree if they do not already have one. By virtue of this policy the percentage of academics among teachers has increased.












































Source: Ministry of Education, Culture and Sport.

680. Another Ministry policy involves the goal of improving the status and social standing of teachers and educators. In this vein, a public campaign was launched in the media, under the slogan “A good teacher is a teacher for life”. A special effort was made by the Ministry and teachers' associations to improve teachers' salaries. This effort resulted in a sharp increase in teachers' salaries between 1993-1996
























Source: Ministry of Education, Culture and Sport.

681. Teachers' salaries are negotiated between the two teachers' associations and the Ministry of Education, Culture and Sport. They are calculated in accordance with the individual teacher's formal education, length of service in the teaching force, amount of accumulated in-service teacher education, and non-teaching school positions by the teacher.

682. Hence, for example, in June 1996 a kindergarten teacher with 16 years of experience earned NIS 5,386 gross (about $1,800), a primary school teacher with 18 years of experience earned NIS 5,559 gross ($1,850), and a lower secondary school teachers with B.A. degree and 18 years of experience earned NIS 5,784 gross (about $1,930).

683. In 1995, pre-school teachers' average salary constituted over 97 per cent of the average salary in the State administration; primary school teachers earned on average 99 per cent of the average salary in the State administration; and secondary school teachers earned on average 103 per cent of the average salary in the State administration.

Responsibility for the establishment and administration of schools

684. Responsibility for the establishment and administration of schools within the framework of compulsory education is divided between the Ministry of Education and the local authorities. Other bodies that may be involved in the establishment and administration of upper secondary schools are public education networks and private bodies. However, the Ministry of Education is responsible for licensing and supervision of all such schools.

685. A distinction is made between State education, State-religious education, and independent, but recognized, educational institutions. The latter are also supported by the State and subject to supervision over their curricula, in accordance with the curriculum and degree of governmental involvement in their operation. There is an insignificant number of other private schools not included in one of these categories.

686. In order to establish a school, private or recognized, a permit needs to be requested from the Ministry of Education, Culture and Sport. The School Inspection Law 1968 requires the Ministry to verify the preservation of adequate educational standards, and to consider the proposed curriculum, schooling schedule, school facilities, safety features, teaching equipment, available financial resources, the type of school and the ages and needs of potential pupils before granting permits.

687. There is no difficulty in moving from one type of school to another, and parents are free to choose the kind of school they wish to send their children to, as long as the school in question operates with State permission.
Article 15 - The right to take part in cultural life
and enjoy scientific progress

The right to take part in cultural life

Funding

688. As an indication of its commitment to the promotion of culture in Israel and to increase the people's participation in cultural life, the Government of Israel invests significant resources in culture-related activities, supporting directly and indirectly a wide range of both public and private cultural activities throughout the country.

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689. The Ministry of Education, Culture and Sport which is responsible for promoting culture in Israel, gives direct financial assistance to some 300 cultural and art institutions, supports culture-related projects, sponsors initiatives in the area of culture, organizes cultural activities in various regions of the country intended for a variety of populations, encourages the artistic endeavours of amateurs, and helps cultural groups preserve their heritage and foster their culture. The Ministry of Education, Culture and Sport, in cooperation with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, also invests resources designed to promote cultural relations and exchanges between Israel and other countries. The Ministry's budget is presented in the following table.
Participation of the Ministry of Education, Culture and Sport
in the budgets of cultural institutions - 1997
(by 1997 budget, in thousands of NIS, and by per cent)
      Field
BudgetDistribution by %
      Total
445 398100
      Israel Association of Community Centers
124 354 28
      Theatres
68 683 16
      Music (orchestras, operas, choirs, institutions)
46 115 11
      Museums, plastic arts
32 607 7
      Orthodox Jewish cultural enterprises
27 718 6
      Research institutes and cultural centres
23 278 5
      Dance
14 910 3
      Public libraries
14 867 3
      Omanut l'Am (“Arts for the People” association)
13 764 3
      Film
13 688 3
      Corporations engaged in cultural activity
11 692 3
      Schools of art
9 544 2
      Literature journals
9 256 2
      Torah culture projects
8 527 2
      Festivals
8 283 2
      Druze and Arab culture
4 789 1
      Ethnic heritage
4 776 1
      Cultural absorption and Israeli culture abroad
3 346 *
      Public archives
1 703 *
      Arts and crafts classes for amateurs
1 480 *
      Jewish philosophy
969 *
      Consulting, surveys and organization
      publications
853 *
      Training administrators of cultural
      organizations
306 *

* Total of all the items marked with (*) amounts to 2 per cent of the budget.


690. One of the most important tools of cultural promotion in Israel are the 170 community centres throughout the country. These centres offer communities, especially those with weaker population concentrations, various cultural-related activities, such as art classes, dance troupes, choirs, theatre groups, etc. Reflective of the policy of the Ministry of Education, Culture and Sport to give high priority to community-oriented cultural activity is the fact that the largest item on the Ministry's culture budget is the financial support allocated to the Israeli Association of Community Centers, which is responsible for the establishment, supervision and support of the community centres.

691. Allocations for cultural institutions and projects are made objectively, based upon equal criteria, taking into consideration the nature and conditions of the activities, their qualitative scope and circumstances, as well as the special needs of each institution and project. Governmental support is offered either as grants or loans to organizers and producers of cultural events (e.g., public theatres, museums), or as a direct support of the individual artists engaged in the cultural activity.

692. The Ministry of Education, Culture and Sport offers several prizes as an additional method of supporting artists. They include a prize for painting and sculpture which is awarded every year to five artists (providing for their sustenance for a whole year), and prizes for young plastic artists and teachers, yearly grants for creativity to writers, poets, and translators. Financial support to cultural activities is also provided by municipal authorities, public and private foundations, private persons, endowments and corporations.

693. The municipalities invest part of their budget in improving cultural facilities, supporting local artists, and sponsoring communal cultural activities. The local authorities are often assisted by private contributions raised by private and public foundations (e.g., the Jerusalem Foundation, the Tel Aviv Foundation for Culture and Art, and the Haifa Development Foundation).

694. Several of the public foundations are financed by the Government (e.g., the Fund for Promotion of Israeli Quality Films and the New Fund for Documentary Films), thus reflecting further indirect investment in culture by the Government. Two important methods of support through public foundations are the Loan Fund for Producers, under which a government fund subsidizes interest on bank loans taken by private producers of artistic productions, and the Fund for the Promotion of Writers which supports writers in Israel according to the number of times their books have been borrowed from public libraries.

695. Foundations and contributors are often associated with major cultural institutions and bodies such as the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra, Israel Museum and Tel Aviv Museum. Associations of friends of major cultural institutions make an important contribution through fund-raising activities inside and outside Israel, and by way of lobbying for public support.

696. A leading example of the involvement of private corporations in culture is Business for the Arts, a non-profit organization that forges links between the Israeli business community and various cultural and artistic enterprises on a “quid pro quo” basis - mainly by offering advertisement of sponsoring businesses (e.g., by way of an ad in a theatre programme). Banks and other business enterprises also serve as direct sponsors, on a regular basis, of activities in the field of art and culture.

697. A unique project, privately initiated, involves the Omanut l'Am (Arts for the People) association. The association has taken upon itself to provide residents of remote areas (outside the main cultural centres) with equal access to cultural and artistic activities. A further aim of Omanut l'Am is to promote art education and appreciation. It sponsors some 12,000 artistic activities annually in all areas of the arts, throughout the country. The association is also involved in cultural-related activities in schools. As indicated above, the Ministry of Education, Culture and Sport directs significant budgetary resources to support the activities of Omanut l'Am.

698. A special Culture Administration was established within the Ministry of Education, Culture and Sport to further support the proper functioning of art and cultural institutions in Israel, including the formulation of long- and short-term policy. The administration also deals with the promotion of amateur activities, absorbing of new immigrant artists, folklore and ethnic heritage, art festivals, and research and science institutes, such as the Academy of the Hebrew Language, the Ben-Gurion Heritage Institute in the Negev and the Yad Itzhak Ben-Zvi Institute for Eretz Israel Studies and Research.

699. Several consultative public councils operate in affiliation with the Culture Administration: the Public Council for Culture and Art,which is a general policy consultative council composed of public figures from the art community; the Public Council for the Promotion of Culture and Art in Neighborhoods and Development Towns contributes to activity among disadvantaged populations; and the Council for Public Libraries and the Council for Museums, both operating under the provisions of the public libraries and museums laws, respectively.
The institutional infrastructure of cultural life in Israel
700. Two laws have been legislated to regulate the operation of specific cultural institutions: the Public Libraries Law 1975 and the Museums Law 1983.

701. The Public Libraries Law defines the responsibility of the State to establish public libraries and specifies the conditions for according a library the status of a public library (thus making it eligible to receive public funds). There are some 950 public library facilities in Israel, as well as school libraries and other libraries throughout the country. Hence, in almost every city or town there is at least one public library. The libraries house books in Hebrew, English, Arabic, Russian, German, French, Spanish, Romanian and Hungarian. There are also some mobile libraries available, designed especially for the use of the members of the armed forces and to accommodate the residents of remote settlements and neighbourhoods.

702. The Museums Law determines the criteria for establishment and recognition of museums by the Museum Council, composed of public figures. Israel has 180 museums of various kinds: art, nature, science, archaeology, history, technology, and other themes.

703. Many other cultural institutions, while not regulated by law, are actively supported by the State:

704. Theatres - There are 21 established theatre groups in Israel performing in theatres around the country. The larger theatre groups are based in Tel Aviv, Haifa, Jerusalem and Beersheva. In addition, special theatre festivals are held annually throughout the country, most notable of which are the Acre Festival for Alternative Theater, the Teatronetto - festival of solo performances in Tel Aviv, and The Jerusalem Puppet Theater. Besides professional theatrical activities, there are several informal community theatres performing in local community centres. In addition to Hebrew-language theatre, there are also theatre groups regularly performing in Arabic, Russian, Yiddish and English.

705. Music - There are some 50 music-oriented organizations in Israel, including 17 orchestras, The Israel Opera, 10 choirs, and various music schools. The Israel Philharmonic Orchestra is counted among the world's best symphony orchestras. At least one concert hall can be found in almost every major town in Israel, hosting various musical performances. In addition, many musical events are held outdoors. Examples of annual music festivals are the Abu Gosh Vocal Music Festival, the Zimria (folk singing festival), the Arad Israeli Pop Music Festival, the Eilat Jazz Festival, and the Rubinstein International Competition for Pianists.

706. The plastic arts - A great number of unique institutions, associations and projects operate throughout the country (e.g., the Ceramic Artists Association, the Association for Jewish Art, professional associations for design, etc.). Art exhibitions are presented in a large number of museums, public and private art galleries, and in private workshops and homes in every part of the country.

707. Films - In recent years, approximately 10 feature films and 30 documentary films are produced in Israel every year. Domestic and foreign films are screened in a large number of cinemas throughout the country. Classic films are being re-screened in the three Cinemateques operating in Tel Aviv, Jerusalem and Haifa. In addition, international film festivals are held annually in Jerusalem and Haifa. Film-making is taught at the universities and in several film schools.

708. Literature - Some 20 literary periodicals are published every year and some 15 similar literary projects exist, organized by various organizations such as the Association of Hebrew Writers and the Association of Writers. In addition, all major newspapers carry a special weekly section on literature and poetry. Books are readily available in the many book stores and public libraries throughout the country. “Hebrew Book Week”, a book fair held in every city, is a popular annual event. Moreover, international book fairs held in Israel, such as the Jerusalem International Book Fair, are also open to the public.

709. Museums such as Beit HaSofer and Beit Agnon in Jerusalem, and Beit Bialik in Tel Aviv host a variety of literary activities, and offer the public information and exhibits on the works and life of important writers.

710. Dance - Twenty dance groups, several dance academies and dance performance centres (e.g., the Susan Dellal Tel Aviv Dance Center) operate in Israel. There are both professional ballet and modern dance companies, most notably Bat-Sheva, The Israel Ballet, Bat Dor and U'dmama (performed mostly by the deaf). Several other troupes focus on popular folklore such as the Jerusalem Dance Company. Israeli and foreign companies perform throughout the country, usually in concert halls. Special dance festivals are held annually in different places in the country. The most notable of these is the Carmiel Folk Dance Festival. Due to the large popularity of folk-dancing in Israel, many community centres throughout the country offer dancing activities and classes.
Cultural and entertainment shows - theatres, orchestras
and dance groups
Spectators (thousands)
Runs
Works of art
ShowsInstitutions 1/
Thereof: Israeli
Total
Theatres
1989/1990
1 999.2
5 525
65
136
13611
1990/1991
1 394.0
4 218
92
151
15111
1991
1 910.4
4 782
50
148
14811
1992
2 029.8
4 696
41
159
15911
1993
1 800.4
5 246
91
171
17113
1994
1 886.6
4 987
73
145
14512
1995
1 942.1
5 075
81
162
16212
Orchestras and opera
1989/1990
699.5
767
42
693
25211
1990/1991
609.1
690
50
598
25611
1991
708.2
852
50
715
30313
1992
765.0
1 099
42
743
30213
1993
794.6
937
33
574
28513
1994
950.8
928
94
894
29911
1995
1 098.0
1 063
53
803
34112
Dance groups
1989/1990
259.3
503
55
85
94 8
1990/1991
233.7
506
69
108
107 8
1991
311.8
599
69
95
105 8
1992
262.1
504
67
84
58 6
1993
327.7
645
62
91
81 7
1994
315.0
602
68
100
71 7
1995
399.8
621
75
103
78 7
Source: The Central Bureau of Statistics.

1/ Institutions that reported (see explanation in introduction).


Cultural identity and heritage of population groups

711. Being a multicultural society, Israel assists various groups in preserving and promoting their culture.

Arab, Druze and Circassian cultural heritage

712. Assistance is given to the promotion of the cultural heritage of Arab, Druze and Circassian minority groups. In these sectors, the State supports, inter alia, oriental orchestras, museums, theatres, and dance groups. Events such as the Arab Culture Month, the Olive Festival (of the Druze in the Galilee) and the Circassian Culture Festival (held in Kfar Kama and Richniya, in the Upper Galilee) have become an important part of the cultural life of those sectors of the population and attract many visitors. In addition, literary works and journals are regularly published in the Arabic language, thus accommodating the needs of the Arabic-speaking sectors.

713. Examples of specific cultural institutions supported in the Arab sector are the professional Arab theatres –such as the Nationwide Arab Theater, and the Beit Hagefen theatre in Haifa – and the Arab Orchestra, which plays Arab classical music. There are various museums dedicated to Arab and Islamic culture, most notably, the Institute for Islamic Art in Jerusalem and the Museum for Arab Folklore (see below). In the Druze sector, the State supports two professional and six amateur theatre companies, four music centres, two professional singing ensembles, and five representative dance companies. Infrastructure has been laid for three Druze museums, and at present there is a library in each of the 16 Druze villages in the country.

Jewish cultural heritage

714. In addition, Israel encourages and fosters cultural activities designed to preserve and promote traditional Jewish heritage of all kinds. Since Jews have come to Israel from 102 countries, different traditions and cultural heritage were introduced in Israel by members of the various Jewish communities. It is the policy of the Ministry of Education, Culture and Sport to support the continued existence of this cultural heterogeneity, which constitutes part of the cultural identity of the nation. Hence, support is given to dozens of professional and amateur performing groups of dancers, singers and music ensembles who preserve the cultural tradition and ethnic heritage of the various communities.

715. Examples of such groups are the Inbal Dance Company, inspired by the Yemenite Jewish heritage; the Ha'Breira Ha'Tivit musical ensemble which draws upon North African ethnic roots; The East and West Orchestra, which also draws upon the heritage of Mediterranean countries and North Africa; and Bustan Avraham, which combines Jewish and Arab cultural elements.

716. Jewish religious scholastic achievements constitute an integral part of the Jewish, and thus Jewish-Israeli, culture. The teaching of its various elements, such as the Bible, Talmud, legends, religious law, and Jewish philosophy, as well as related Jewish music, art and history, is held in several institutional and cultural frameworks.

717. Languages which were developed and used by the Jews in the Diaspora are considered part of the national cultural heritage. In order to preserve two of these languages – Yiddish and Ladino - in which some of the greatest cultural achievements of the Jewish people were created, the Knesset enacted in 1966, the National Authority for Yiddish Culture Law and the National Authority for Ladino Culture Law. Both laws provide for the recognition of these two languages and cultures; the promotion and encouragement of contemporary artistic works in those languages; assistance for institutions in which activity relating to these cultures takes place (e.g., Yiddish-speaking theatre); compilation of cultural treasures, both oral and written, in and relating to these languages; and encouraging the publication of selected works in these languages as well as adequate translations into Hebrew. The annual budgeting allocations for each of these languages amounts to approximately NIS 750,000.

Institutions involved in the promotion of cultural identity

718. Universities and research institutes conduct studies of ethnic cultures, and conferences and symposia are held on the subject. Numerous academic publications dealing with a wide spectrum of topics relating to cultural identity are published every year.

719. Several museums in Israel focus upon various population groups and the preservation of their unique cultures:

- The Museum of the Jewish Diaspora (Tel Aviv) - relates the unique story and culture of the Jewish people since the time it exiled from its homeland and presents its history, tradition and heritage.

- The Center for Babylonian Heritage (Or Yehuda) - presents the culture, art, history and folklore of Iraqi Jewry.

- The Museum for Arab Folklore (Acre) - exhibits traditional arts and folklore items of the Arab population.

- The Institute for Islamic Art (Jerusalem) - houses extensive permanent exhibitions of pottery, textiles, jewellery, ceremonial objects and the like, covering a thousand years of Islamic art, Spain to India, and features temporary exhibits on special themes.

- The Center for the Integration of Oriental and Sephardi Jewish Heritage constitutes another source of information on Jewish culture. This centre, located in the Ministry of Education, is responsible for the integration of Oriental and Sephardi Jewish heritage into the various sectors of education and culture.

720. Legislation in the field of mass communications exists in a number of spheres:

721. The Broadcasting Authority Law 1965 - The law regulates the activities of the Broadcasting Authority responsible for several TV and radio channels. Among the roles of the authority are the broadcasting of educational and informative programmes, as well as entertainment in the areas of culture, science and the arts; strengthening of the links to Jewish heritage; reflecting the life and cultural treasures of Jewish communities in different countries; promoting Jewish and Israeli creative work; and accommodating the needs of the Arab-speaking population. The Broadcasting Authority gives ample expression to Israeli cultural production and creation. In a recent move, one of the authority's radio stations has begun to play Israeli music only.

722. The Second Authority for Television and Radio Law 1990 - This law defines the functions of the Second Authority, which is responsible for the commercial TV Channel 2, and regional radio stations. Among the roles of the authority is the provision of suitable expression to the cultural variety of Israeli society, of Israeli minorities and of the different international cultures. In order to further promote Hebrew and Israeli works, Channel 2 franchise-holders are required to broadcast local productions (i.e., productions made in Israel in the Hebrew language), for at least one third of the air time. The franchise-holders are also required to invest in Israeli cinematic films.

723. The “Bezeq” Law, 1982 - This law addresses, among other things, the operation of cable and satellite TV broadcasting in Israel. It prescribes the taking into consideration of the cultural variety of the Israeli society and the needs of different regions of the country. Consequently, it facilitates the establishment of local community channels and the preparation of programmes on cultural subjects, including those of minority cultures.

724. The media plays an important role in promoting participation in the cultural life of Israel. Many radio and television programmes are dedicated to art, literature, movies, theatre, Jewish culture and other ethnic cultures. Special broadcasts cover cultural and artistic events and report on festivals and shows held inside and outside Israel. In addition, advertisements for cultural performances appear in all media channels. Programmes in Arabic and in other languages used in Israel (English, Russian, and Amharic) are also offered on TV and radio.

725. The Ministry of Education, Culture and Sport operates an educational television service which is granted by law broadcast time on the private and public channels. Educational television aims, inter alia, to increase participation in cultural life; to provide learning and knowledge in culture and art, science, communications and other fields; to increase involvement in educational, cultural and social matters; and to give expression to all facets of the cultural heritage of Israel's citizens.

726. Further sources of promotion of culture through the mass media are the Open University (a distance learning institution designed to promote academic education among wide populations) which broadcasts classes on radio and TV; foreign TV channels broadcasting in Israel through cable channels; and the Internet.

727. All daily newspapers include special sections and supplements devoted to cultural issues and cover on a regular basis cultural events. In addition, a number of culture-related journals are published on literature, art, photography and other subjects.

Preservation and display of mankind's cultural heritage

728. Much attention is paid in Israel to the preservation and presentation of antiquities and historical sites.

729. Preservation of antiquities - The preservation of antiquities dating from before 1700 CE falls under the jurisdiction of the Antiquities Authority. The latter operates in accordance with the Antiquities Authority Law 1978. The authority deals with the excavation, preservation, development, and restoration of antiquities and antiquities sites; supervision of archaeological excavations; management, safeguarding and supervision of the State's antiquities treasures; and the carrying-out of inspections intended to ensure prevention of infringements of the Antiquities Law.

730. Many important archeological findings, such as the Dead Sea Scrolls, are presented in museums and cultural centres. In addition, many sites such as Massada, Nabatian and Byzantine cities, Roman theatres, ancient synagogues, and prehistoric caves are open to the general public. The maintenance and operation of such sites (as opposed to their excavation and restoration) are the responsibility of the National Parks, Natural Reserves and Commemoration Sites Council.

731. Preservation of other sites - The Public Council for Preservation of Sites is in charge of the preservation of sites and buildings of historical value from after 1700 CE (e.g., the “illegal” immigrants camp from pre-State days at Atlit and buildings in Tel Aviv designed in the Bauhaus style).

732. The State of Israel is involved in professional international cooperation in the field of preservation and restoration of cultural treasures, through the International Centre for the Study of the Preservation and Restoration of Cultural Property and the International Council of Monuments and Sites.

Freedom of artistic creation and performance

733. It is the policy of the Ministry of Education, Culture and Sport to support the protection of artistic creation and performance. Artists in Israel express themselves in various artistic fields and often express political views. However, government support is afforded without any discrimination on the basis of the political views of the artist in question, and some of the artistic projects which are receiving State funds reflect sharp criticism of the Government.

734. Although a film-rating commission with censorship powers still exists in Israel (whereas other forms of official non-security-related censorship have been abolished), the Supreme Court of Israel (sitting as an administrative court) exercises broad powers of review over its decisions, and has nullified on several occasions decisions to censor controversial artistic films (involving pornography). The court has held that freedom of artistic and creative expression is a protected constitutional right which can only be restricted in extreme situations involving a clear showing of severe threat to public order or safety.

735. The Supreme Court has stated that:

736. Furthermore, the Court states that:

Professional education in culture and art

737. There are 14 professional post-secondary art schools, recognized by the Ministry of Education, Culture and Sport, which provide training in a variety of artistic areas. Seven of these institutions have been authorized by the Council of Higher Education to grant academic degrees to graduates. These include Bezalel - the academy of arts and design - the Rubin Academy of Music, and the Shenkar School of Fashion and Textile. In addition, universities have art departments in which the history of art, art appreciation, film-making, theatre, music and other culture-related topics are taught. Regional colleges also have art departments in which programmes and courses in film-making, theatre, plastic arts, dance, music and other art forms are given.

738. Certain universities and colleges also offer study programmes in the administration of cultural institutions.

739. The Mediterranean Culture Forum: In order to improve the coordination activities aimed at integrating cultural preservation, a Forum for Mediterranean Culture has been jointly established by the Ministry of Education, Culture and Sport, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, The Van Leer Research Institute and Mishkenot Sha’ananim Cultural Center. The forum initiates various activities to preserve and disseminate a combination of eastern and western Mediterranean culture. At this stage, the forum is initiating 10 projects dealing with topics such as: Jewish, Christian and Muslim relations; relations between Sephardim (Jews originating from Muslim countries) and Ashkenazim (Jews originating from European countries) through theatrical performances, music, journals and films; and the exchange of culture, knowledge and tradition.

740. The Israel Prize: The prize is awarded in the fields of science and art, commemorating the lifetime achievements of renowned personalities, scholarly thinkers, promoters of Israeli heritage, scientists, writers, cultural figures and artists. It expresses the State’s gratitude of the recipients' activities and achievements, as well as their contribution to society. The Israel Prize is awarded annually on the basis of the recommendations of a public committee, with the approval of the Minister of Education, Culture and Sport.

741. Special cultural programmes for the disadvantaged: Much attention is being given by the Ministry of Education, Culture and Sport to the cultural needs of disadvantaged groups and sectors of the population. This includes supporting cultural activities for the disabled such as dance groups, orchestras and choirs for handicapped youth, the wheelchair-bound and children suffering from Down Syndrome.

742. Promotion of culture within education: Subjects related to the arts and culture are taught in all levels of the education system. Literature, foreign languages, arts, photography, theatre and film are part of both the compulsory and elective curriculum. There are also several adult education arts and culture programmes. Within the framework of secondary education, there are special schools for the arts which place special emphasis on the arts, in addition to the regular curriculum.

743. Cultural enrichment is an important educational element. Schools receive a “culture basket” which includes annual attendance at some five to seven artistic performances per student. Furthermore, a wide variety of cultural activities take place within the schools themselves, including student orchestras and choirs, dance troupes and theatre groups.

744. In addition, many cultural activities for children and youth take place in community centres, in cultural, youth and sports centres, youth clubs, youth and in various other extracurricular activities.

745. With the aid of Mifal Hapayis (the National Lottery), the Government is building 70 centres for science and the arts in lower secondary schools (for the 12 to 14-year-old age group), in consonance with the policy to develop interdisciplinary curricula in science and the arts. Construction of 45 such centres began during 1996-1997. Other cultural facilities in schools throughout the country include performance arenas and art workshops.

746. Another “access to culture” project under way is the computerization of libraries, and the establishment of Internet access in libraries and schools.

International cultural cooperation

747. Israel has cultural agreements with a large number of countries worldwide. Some thirty public festivals are held in Israel, some of which include the participation of many artistic groups from abroad. Many of the world’s leading performing artists perform in Israel on a commercial basis. Similarly, important international art exhibitions are presented in Israel from time to time.

748. The State of Israel, Israeli organizations and individuals are members of various international cultural and art organizations. Israeli artists participate on a regular basis in conferences worldwide, some of which convene in Israel. Throughout the years, Israel has obtained valuable cooperation on the part of international organizations and foundations in the field of culture.

The enjoyment of scientific progress

Institutional promotion of research and development

749. The basic structure of the R & D system in Israel was laid down in the late 1950s by a high-level committee headed by Ephraim Katzir, himself a scientist of world renown and later-President of Israel. The committee suggested that each ministry be made responsible for R & D within its own areas of public accountability; and that all R & D activities be directed and coordinated by a Chief Scientist. The committee's recommendations were adopted by the Government in 1968. Hence, a two-tier approach exists wherein each ministry remains free to pursue its own R & D agenda while two high-level forums were created to ensure inter-ministerial cooperation and collaboration. The first is the Ministerial Committee for Science and Technology; and the second is the Chief Scientists' Forum. Both forums are headed by the Minister of Science.

750. In addition, the consultative National Council for Research and Development (NCRD) advises the Government in its consolidation of a comprehensive national R & D policy, and provides it assistance in determining the allocation of resources to scientific institutions and projects. In 1994, a temporary committee, The Executive National Committee for the Development of Scientific and Technological Strategic Research (the “Committee of Thirteen”), was established by the NCRD to identify priority areas. (See below.)

751. The implementation of Israel’s R & D policy is divided among three different ministries:

The national R & D budget

752. Israeli industry has traditionally under-invested in long-term R & D. The business sector in Israel invests on average 36 per cent of the total national expenditure on R & D compared to an average of 51 per cent for Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development countries. Two national programmes attempt to compensate for this failure on the part of industry:

1. The Ministry of Science provides additional R & D funds to high priority fields. The ministry aims to create a critical mass of knowledge, know-how and experience in priority areas to be later diffused in industry and implemented in the creation of new and advanced value-added products.

2. The Ministry of Industry and Trade funds shorter-term industry-motivated R & D, and supports factories and other industry businesses investing in R & D. The Ministry normally funds 66 per cent of the research costs of approved projects.

753. Strategic generic research accounts for only 8 per cent of the government national R & D budget. In comparison, basic research receives 34 per cent of the budget and applied industrial research – through the Office of the Chief Scientist of the Ministry of Industry and Trade – 38 per cent.
Expenditure of government ministries on civilian R & D,
by type of expenditure
Transfers
Purchases of civilian R & D
Intramural expenses
Total
Current expenses
WagesTotal
NIS million, at current prices
1990
335
33
61
67128 436
1991
443
33
63
81150 532
1992
530
45
81
91172 747
1993
727
41
76
110188 956
1994
347
53
122
1642861 286
1995
-
-
-
--1 457
At 1989 prices
1990
286
28
52
56108 422
1991
322
29
50
56105 456
1992
340
23
52
57110 478
1993
411
23
44
71115 549
1994
487
27
52
81133 647
1995
-
-
-
-- 654
Per cent change in previous year
1990
10.0
    -13.7
    -14.4
6.7-4.74.0
1991
12.5
    4.3
    -5.0
0.2-2.38.2
1992
5.5
    -1.4
    5.7
2.34.24.7
1993
20.3
    -18.2
    -16.3
23.64.614.8
1994
18.5
    15.4
    18.2
14.115.717.8
1995
-
    -
    -
--1.1

Source: The Central Bureau of Statistics. National expenditure on civilian R & D,
by operating and financing sector

Operating
Private non-profit institution
Higher education a/
Government
Business
Total
At current prices
1993
    TOTAL - NIS million
325.0
1 431.0
504.2
1 331.3
4 312.1
    - per cents
7
35
12
46
100
    Financing sector
    Business
0
1
0
34
36
    Government
3
16
3
12
40
    Higher education a/
0
10
0
0
10
    Private non-profit inst.
3
2
2
0
7
    Rest of the world
1
6
1
0
7
NIS million, at 1989 prices
    1989
164
636
260
934
1 994
    1990
173
678
245
931
2 027
    1991
176
693
265
1 028
2 162
    1992
180
774
284
1 117
2 355
    1993 b/
196
820
285
1 153
2 454
Per cent change c/ on previous year
    1990
5.7
6.6
-5.8
-0.3
1.7
    1991
1.8
2.3
8.2
10.3
6.6
    1992
2.3
11.7
7.2
8.7
8.8
    1993 b/
8.9
5.9
0.4
3.2
4.2
Source: The Central Bureau of Statistics.

a/ Incl. the Universities and Weizman Institute of Science.

b/ Early estimate.

c/ Per cent change was calculated before rounding.
Expenditure on separately budgeted research in universities
by scientific field, institution and source of funding
    At 1990/91 prices
1990/91
1988/89
1984/85
1981/82
NIS million
    TOTAL (1)
274.2
260.2
273.6
140.3
Per cents
    TOTAL (1)
100.0
100.0
100.0
100.0
    Scientific field
    Natural sciences and mathematics
51.3
58.0
43.2
45.6
Engineering and architecture
13.7
12.3
17.1
19.7
    Agriculture
3.7
3.6
5.3
4.2
    Medicine and paramedical courses
13.9
13.1
14.0
14.3
    Social sciences and other
17.3
12.8
14.4
15.6
    Institution
    The Hebrew University
32.4
31.8
35.4
36.8
    Technion R & D Foundation
15.3
14.3
13.4
20.2
    Tel-Aviv University
15.4
7.8
10.5
14.1
    Bar-Ilan University
4.0
4.3
3.3
3.1
    Haifa University
0.6
0.3
0.7
0.7
    Ben-Gurion University of the Negev
10.2
3.5
6.6
6.8
    Weizmann Institute of Science
22.1
31.4
23.5
16.3
    Source of financing
    Israel - Total
56.7
55.4
57.7
56.4
    Academic
6.3
5.6
6.2
7.0
    Public
42.0
34.0
36.3
43.6
    Private
6.4
10.3
12.5
7.8
    Foreign sources
41.3
46.6
42.3
41.6
Per cent financing of Israeli sources
    Scientific field
    Natural sciences and mathematics
50.0
45.2
51.8
.
    Engineering and architecture
77.0
63.3
77.2
.
    Agriculture
71.7
74.6
52.3
.
Source: The Central Bureau of Statistics.

Support of scientific activity and dissemination of scientific knowledge

754. Special projects: The Government of Israel supports several programmes designed to promote unique scientific activity and disseminate scientific knowledge.

755. Ministry of Science projects: The Ministry of Science gives support to a wide range of special programmes. Support is normally given for only one year at a time, but grantees are encouraged to re-submit an application for further funding. Applications for support are reviewed according to the Ministry of Science’s current criteria for sponsoring public bodies and projects (which were last updated in April 1995). Emphasis is placed on the geographic and demographic dispersion of scientific and technological activities and knowledge, both to peripheral regions and to the populations of immigrants from the former USSR and Ethiopia. The major areas of support are:

756. Regional research and development centres: The Ministry of Science supports regional R & D centres in peripheral areas which strive to create and stimulate science and technology R & D activities intended to benefit the region in which they are situated, and to attend to the needs of local population. Currently, five such regional R & D centres receive Ministry funding: the Golan R & D Center; the Mitzpeh Ramon Center in the northern Negev; the Katif Center for the Study of Coastal Deserts; the Galilee Center for R & D (which promotes R & D by the Israeli Arab scientific community); and the Hatzevah R & D Center, in the southern Arava Negev region.

757. Enrichment activities - science and technology: The Ministry of Science supports a wide range of programmes aimed at advancing the scientific and technological literacy of the general public, with priority given to educating children and youth outside the main urban centres. In particular, support is offered to unique extracurricular activities not available through the education system due to budgetary constraints; programmes for populations who otherwise have limited selection of enrichment activities; programmes for the disadvantaged, and programmes for the Arab and Druze minority sector. Only projects open to all residents of the locality in which they take place, on a non-discriminatory basis, are eligible for support.

758. Some of the programmes under this category which were funded in 1997 are: science workshops, seminars, summer schools and scientific tours for youth and children; the establishment of scientific facilities such as a communication station, a small scale observatory, and scientific activity centres; the publication of the first few issues of a new popular scientific journal in Arabic; scientific exhibitions; and scientific competitions. Overall, 15 projects at a total cost of around $300,000 were funded in 1997.

759. Two national science museums operate under the auspices of the Ministry of Science: The National Museum for Science and Technology of Haifa, and The Science Museum of Jerusalem. These museums receive part of their annual income ($1 million in 1997) from the Ministry.

760. The Ministry of Science also organized in 1996 and again in 1997 a special event - "The Opening of the Scientific Year", the purpose of which was to bring public attention to the importance of scientific activity for improving the quality and standard of living in Israel. On this occasion, and in order to encourage youth involvement with science, the Ministry invited adolescents from all over the country to present their unique projects to representatives of the scientific community, and held a competition on the best popular scientific article. The Ministry of Science is considering to make this event a tradition, and is currently planning next year's competition.

761. Encouragement of scientific interchange: Apart from the support given by the Ministry of Science to bi-national and international conferences and seminars (see infra), it also provides partial financial assistance for national conferences conducted under the auspices of other private or public institutions. This support is aimed at creating opportunities for high-level scientific interchange. The additional support offered by the Ministry encourages, whenever possible, students and young scientists to attend them.

762. Ministry of Trade and Industry projects: The Ministry of Trade and Industry operates several “technology incubators”. Their aim is to create a supportive framework that will enable resource-limited scientists and engineers to work on R & D projects. The incubators offer the developer of a scientific research project a broad logistic infrastructure, including laboratories, instruments, economic management, legal advice and other services.

763. Twenty-eight incubators are operating at present around the country, encompassing 230 running projects (half of which were initiated by new immigrants). Some 1,100 workers are employed in incubators (about 80 per cent of whom are also new immigrants). Every month, an average of 10 new projects are approved for funding by the Ministry. Incubator-sponsored projects may last up to two years. Subsequent research may be eligible for other Ministry financing programmes.

764. The Agricultural Research Administration: Of special importance to scientific progress in Israel are the R & D activities of the Agricultural Research Administration, operating within the Ministry of Agriculture. The administration operates seven research institutes and several experiment stations and experimental farms, and has carried out hundreds of research projects throughout the country.

- The Centre for Field and Garden Crops studies cultivation techniques, strains of plants, medical agricultural, agro-technical methods and biotechnology.

- The Institute for Plantations tests new species and strains for marketing qualities, irrigation and fertilization methods, climate and soil adaptability; studying ways of controlling fruit ripening and designing orchards.

- The Institute for Animals studies feeding; reproduction and fertility in cattle and sheep, qualities of eggs and poultry; study of animal hybridization and genetic engineering.

- The Flora Protection Institute conducts research projects for identifying plants' diseases; development of environment-friendly pesticides and of resistive plants.

- The Land and Water Institute studies irrigation methods and water and land quality.

- The Institute for Technology and Storage of Agricultural Produce examines the handling of agricultural products, and the development of healthy food products.

- The Agricultural Engineering Institute carries research projects concerning agricultural machinery and their adaptation to Israeli agriculture.

- The Center for International Agricultural Cooperation and Instruction (operated jointly with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs) runs training courses in agricultural development intended for hundreds of students. Some course are given outside Israel to foreign agriculturists (e.g. in Latin America, Asia, Africa, Egypt and Eastern Europe).

765. Research grants and scholarships are awarded by several private and public funds, in addition to the regular university funding. This system constitutes an important source of support in scientific activity. Examples of such financial support are the following funding programmes:

766. The Council for Higher Education offers over 20 three-year grants (Alon Grants for Young Scientists) annually, which permit outstanding young scientists to find posts at the universities; The Rashi Foundation, a private fund, partly supported by the public Planning and Budgeting Committee, provides 15 immigrant scientists with annual grants; (the Guestella Foundation); Similar grants are awarded to another 15 senior immigrant scientists by the Berekha Foundation; The Israel Academy of Sciences and Humanities supports research programmes concerning the fauna, flora and geology of Israel; and The Rothschild Foundation supports new immigrants studying for a doctorate in natural sciences.

767. Publications: Numerous scientific publications are published in Israel every year. Some of these publications are funded by the academic institutions, whereas others are supported by public and private bodies.

Freedom of scientific research and creative activity

768. The protection of scientific and creative expression is considered part of the freedom of speech, which constitutes a fundamental value of the Israeli legal system. The Supreme Court of Israel has stated:

769. Hence, scientific publications and interchange cannot be restricted save in extreme situations, i.e. where they almost certainly threaten public safety or order. Furthermore, according to the principles of Israeli administrative law, the Government cannot withhold support from a scientific or creative expression merely by reason of objection to the contents of that expression.

International cooperation

770. Israel's scientists are very much interwoven in the international scientific community. One third of all Israeli scientific papers in international journals include foreign co-authors. Academics receive generous professional travel and sabbatical allowances as part of their terms of employment. Most postdoctoral fellows spend one or two years in world-class research centres abroad before beginning their research careers.

771. International scientific cooperation is particularly vital for Israel in several ways. Joint research programmes and cost-sharing help stretch Israel's limited research budget, and gives Israeli scientists access to large multi-billion-dollar research facilities that Israel cannot afford to duplicate. Collaboration with scientists abroad provides intellectual synergy with a large pool of talent and helps Israel maintain world-class scientific standards despite its small size.

772. In accordance with this approach, the Ministry of Science administers various international programmes which are intended to facilitate and encourage collaboration between researchers from Israel and foreign countries. In particular, it operates programmes of scientific cooperation based on bilateral agreements with 26 countries around the world. Support is given in the following three areas of activities:

- joint research projects;

- exchange of scientists (at different levels of seniority: doctoral students, junior and senior researchers);

- joint conferences.

773. Within the framework of each agreement, and in coordination with the respective country, the Ministry periodically issues invitations to submit proposals, directed for researchers competing for joint funding.

774. Each year the Ministry of Science supports two international scientific conferences, and several bilateral ones. In order to ensure wide dissemination of cutting-edge scientific knowledge the Ministry regularly subsidizes the entrance fee of participants from the general public in such conferences.

775. The biggest international scientific cooperation programme in which Israel is taking part involves the European Union. Israel joined the EU Fourth Framework Program for R & D in 1996. The agreement commits Israel to pay an annual membership fee of $40 million. In return, Israeli scientists are able to participate and compete for grants in the following four activities: research projects with scientists from EU; research projects with scientists from non-EU member States; grants for dissemination and implementation of research results; and, grants for training and mobility of researchers (conferences, mutual visits, scholarships, etc.).

776. The agreement is based on the principle of reciprocity, and entitles researchers from the EU to have access to Israel's national programmes for R & D. This obligation on the part of Israel is currently in the implementation process.

777. The Ministry of Science coordinates Israeli participation in several international organizations and research facilities, such as CERN (European Nuclear Research Center), EMBO (European Molecular Biology Organization), EMBL (European Molecular Biology Laboratory) and UNESCO.

778. In the last two years Israel gained observer status in the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development and participates in the organization's activities in the area of science and technology, sharing information and acquiring further knowledge on science and technology policy. Israel has also been invited by the North Atlantic Treaty Organization to take part in the organization's scientific activities, under its Mediterranean Dialogue.

779. Additional international cooperation is exercized by the Israel Academy of Sciences and Humanities. The Academy operates a scientific centre in Cairo, the aim of which is to assist Israeli researchers in work associated with Egypt and its culture, and to encourage cooperation with Egyptian researchers in all spheres of science and research. The academy also has an observer status at the European Foundation for Science and takes part in its activities. Among them are the meetings of the permanent committee of the foundation for humanities, social sciences, the European councils for medical research, the European councils for scientific research and the four “scientific nets” of the foundation. It also represents Israel at the International Council of Scientific Unions (ICSU).

780. The academy runs scientists’ exchange programmes with academies in Western Europe and Eastern Europe and promotes contacts with national academies and scientific research communities throughout the world.

The legal protection given to intellectual property

781. Literary and artistic works are protected in Israel by copyright and performers' rights laws. Scientific inventions are protected by the patent laws. The basic principle, according to which intellectual property is protected under Israeli law, was reiterated by the Supreme Court of Israel:

Copyrights

782. Israel's main copyright law – the Copyright Law is based on the United Kingdom Copyright Act of 1911. However, it forms only a part of Israeli copyright statutory law. The other primary copyright statutory instruments include the Copyright Ordinance 1924; Copyright Order (Berne Convention) 1953; and the Copyright Order (Universal Copyright Convention) 1955.

783. Protection granted to the holder of a copyright includes the exclusive right to (a) copy or reproduce the work; (b) translate or otherwise adapt the work; (c) distribute copies of the work; and (d) publicly communicate the work. It is not necessary to submit a formal application in order to obtain copyright protection in Israel. It is generally recommended that authors mark their works with a copyright notice including the author’s name and the date of creation. Copyright protection subsists for the life of the author and for a period of 70 years after his/her death .

784. Both civil and criminal remedies against breaches of copyrights are provided for in the law. The civil remedies include action for damages, accounting for profits, and court seizure orders and injunctions. As to criminal remedies, the Copyright Ordinance 1924, as amended subsequently, provides that commercial infringement of a copyright copies constitutes a criminal offence punishable by up to three years of imprisonment and the possible seizure and destruction of infringing copies. The law also provides for limitations and exceptions to the protection of the copyright: fair use of the protected material is permitted if used for private study, research, criticism, review, or a journalistic summary.

785. Several significant amendments have been introduced in the Copyright Ordinance which have substantially modified the law and brought it to date with recent developments.

1. In 1981, the concept of moral rights was added to the law. Consequently, each author has the right to have his/her name applied to his/her own work, as well as the right to seek relief against distortion, modification or derogatory actions in relation to the work, which may offend the author’s reputation or dignity.

2. Since 1988 computer software is also protected by copyright on the same terms as “literary works”.

3. Since March 1996 the renting and leasing rights of audio and visual copyrighted works belong exclusively to the copyright holder. Furthermore, the Government was instructed to transfer 5 per cent of the market retail proceeds from the sales of blank audio and video cassettes (deducted from VAT proceeds), to right holders subject to the supervision of a special committee.

4. The protection of copyright laws has been extended to databases and compilations, even if the “raw material” data was a matter of public property.

786. Israel is a member of the following conventions:

- The Berne Convention under its Brussels Act,

- The Universal Copyright Convention under its initial Act,

- The Geneva Convention of 1971 for the Protection of Producers of Phonograms Against Unauthorized Duplication of their Phonograms, and

- The World Trade Organization, and the Agreement on Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights (TRIPS).

787. Lastly, the Copyright Law Reform Committee set up by Israel’s Ministry of Justice has completed its work and a new draft copyright bill has been distributed for comment to members of the public.

788. Performers' rights: under the Performers' Rights Law 1984, a singer, actor, music player, dancer, or any other performer of a literary, artistic, dramatic or musical work is entitled to prevent the recording, copying, broadcasting and commercial use of his/her performance without permission. The court may order to confiscate unauthorized copies of the performance.

Patents

789. Patents are protected in Israel by two separate acts: The Patents Law 1967 and the Patents and Designs Ordinance. Under these laws an inventor may register a patent to an invention if he/she can prove innovation, usefulness, commercial applicability and inventive progress. The proprietor of a patent is entitled to prevent anyone from using the patent without his/her permission.

790. The Registrar of Patents is authorized to issue coercion permits, enabling others to use the patented invention, if he/she is convinced that the proprietor is exploiting the monopoly over the patent. Other restrictions imposed upon the scope of protection offered by the patent system is the limited life span of a registered patent (20 years), and the exclusion of inventions constituting bodily medical treatments, and artificial animal and plant species from the system.

791. The policy considerations underlying the institution of patents and its interplay with coercion permits was analysed at length by the Supreme Court of Israel:
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1996-2001
Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights
Geneva, Switzerland