Ministers of Education, Finance and Social Affairs presented the details of the plan which should make things easier for parents: 3 weeks of summer activities with a fee that will change according to the socioeconomic status of each locality
Minister Peiron and Lapid at the press conference Photography: Channel 2 News
A historical change in the Israeli education system: the Ministers of Education, Finance and Social Affairs announced that the summer holiday will be shortened with their “summer holiday schools” plan. According to the announcement, as soon as this year, first and second graders will stay in school for an additional 3 weeks after the 30th of June, in a summer format. “In order to create an exemplary society, we must be responsible for the leisure hours as well” said Minister of Education Shai Peiron in the press conference.
In addition to the 1st and 2nd graders, 30 thousands 3rd to 5th graders from the geographical periphery will join the program this year. Next year 3rd and 4th graders across the country will join the program, and later on kindergarten children and 5th graders throughout the country will join. The fee parents will pay for the program will be determined by the socioeconomic status of their city of residence.
Finance Minister Yair Lapid began the official press conference and said that “the parents pay spends thousands of shekels every summer on camps and other arrangements for their children. There is no correlation between the days off of working parents and the students’ vacation time. It burdens the parents, and it is our job to change the situation”.
“There is a special value to the fact that the education system is the one to lead the change” Lapid continued, “because it means that we can pour content and values in this period of time that you will not find in any summer camp or with a babysitter”.
“The message from this says: Education, education, education”
The Minister of Education, Shai Peiron, who initiated the move, said that “overall we are returning education to being the main language of the Israeli society. In the end we have a responsibility to every child in Israel, every hour of the day, everywhere in the country, at all ages”.
“In order to create an exemplary society, we must be responsible for the leisure hours as well” Peiron said. “It is very important for me to convey a deep message from here that says: education, education, education”.
Social Affairs Minister Meir Cohen added that the “cooperation between education and welfare with the backing of the treasury, is the driving force for creating the most significant social changes, as this project is creating. When I said that ‘Yesh Atid’ ministers are taking the most important social positions upon themselves, this is what I meant. Thousands of children of struggling families will enjoy a high level educational program”.
The Friendship Fund has announced that it will donate 30 million shekels for the next few years in order to help aid parents that will find it hard to pay for the new summer program.
The new program will cancel the current shortening of the summer holiday, so that the school year will again start of the 1st of September and not the 27th of August.