Peres: Refusal to Enroll Ethiopian Students a Disgrace No Israeli Can Accept


peresPresident Shimon Peres yesterday slammed the refusal by a number of schools in Petach Tikvah to enroll Ethiopian immigrant children. The decision not to enroll the students is “a disgrace no Israeli can accept”, Peres said. In response, the three Petach Tikvah private schools issed a joint statement yesterday in which they vowed to allow Ethiopian immigrant children and students with disabilities to enroll for school, adding “it’s up to the president to learn the facts of the matter.”

Peres’ statements Thursday came after it was reported that the Education Ministry is preparing to immediately pull all funding for private chareidi schools that refuse to enroll Ethiopian immigrant children, according to various ministry sources.The sources said the funding would stop unless the schools agreed by Sunday – two days before the school year begins – to enroll all the students assigned to them.

“We will not allow racist provocations, even if they are couched in all kinds of pretexts,” Education Minister Gideon Sa’ar said Tuesday.

A ministry official said the parents whose children attend the three schools in question are relatively well-off, and would not be affected by “a fine of a few percentage points. Therefore, the decision taking shape is to stop all funding.”

These three schools receive most of their money from the ministry and the municipality.

The acting mayor of Petach Tikva, who is in charge of the city’s Orthodox education system, Moti Zaft, said the only solution was separate classes for the immigrants, because they lacked knowledge and learning skills. Social activities would be held jointly with other children, he said.

He said the city’s schools had agreed to divide equally the Ethiopian student body, and that the private schools had accepted his plan.

Sa’ar responded that special immigrant classes were “a stain on the education system and on any school that uses them,” in an interview with Army Radio.

Rabbi Shay Piron, executive director of Hakol Chinuch, the Movement for the Advancement of Education in Israel, said Wednesday, “The struggle against the three private schools in Petah Tikva needs a much wider focus, on ‘recognized, unofficial education.’ Unless we wipe out this phenomenon, which has only grown in recent years, public education will continue to be the less attractive choice for Israeli parents.”

{Haaretz/Yair Israel}


  1. These Ethiopians are Jewish only for political correct purposes. It has been shown time and again that they are not really Jewish.
    The Israeli government, with its inferiority complex and in its eagerness to show the world that they are a country like all others and do not discriminate imported them and stated they are Jewish.
    They have been shown to not be Jewish hallachacly as well as by genetics.

  2. First of all, many have undergone giyur lechumrah. Second, they discriminate against Sephardim, too.

    When a movement knows it is not emes it will do anything possible to isolate its children and followers lest they be exposed to the outside world and open their minds.